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The Balcony Is Open

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Won't you stay a while?
Won't you stay a while?

As we head into the weekend, Sam and I once again are here to put our hockey thoughts into you. Wait, that didn't sound right. Anyway, let's get on with it.

 

McClure:

So Mr. Fels, you had written both here and in the Indian that with a win on Wednesday (which the Hawks earned), that they would only need to take 2 of a potential 4 points on this mini-road trip in San Jose and Colorado. After seeing San Jose get beaten by a sub-par Sabres in a game in Buffalo which saw the HTML Line (Heatley - Thornton - Marleau) get saddled with a collective -9, are you altering your expectations a bit?

Additionally, with Jeremy Morin's games played total inching ever closer to the threshold at which Stan Bowman needs to make a choice about keeping him here or sending him to junior, where do you see him heading? Personally, even with the cap constraints once everyone has returned, I'd like to see them find a way to have him stay. John Scott is still a waste of a roster spot, and it's clear that Jordan Hendry isn't getting out of Q's doghouse any time soon, so why not cut bait for a kid who can actually play. Three years down the road the contract situation won't be a dire as it was this past offseason, and who knows what the CBA will look like.

Finally, since you've fallen ass backwards into getting tickets for the BIGGEST FOOTBALL GAME OF THE YEAR EVER at Soldier Field this Sunday, how exactly are you planning on staying warm, and if you get unintentionally frozen into cryostasis, can I have your Xbox?

Sam:

Thanks for having me, long time listener first time caller, Matt.

Actually, what I think I said was that the Hawks require three of four points.  But what I say and what I meant to say are usually two very different things, as you know more than most (ask Matt about my Coldplay-hate related outbursts at the bar.  Those are still my expectations, but I'm awfully uneasy about it.  Even though the Sharks got the Buffalo cabbie treatment as HSBC, I think that's more of a "last game of a road trip and we just wanna go home here because it's fucking cold in Buffalo" thing.  The Sharks had a pretty good road trip, fully thrashing the Wings on it.  Their only other loss was amongst the Quebecois, who are looking a pretty tasty outfit these days.  Considering how banged up the Hawks are and how inspired the Sharks would still be to face their executioners last spring, it's an awfully tough assignment.  What really worries me is that even though Bolland can throttle Thornton at times, Logan Couture has been absolutely on fire on the third line, and he can hit the Hawks where they hurt.  However, once again the Hawks are catching a team on its first home game after a long road trip, and you can catch a team napping.  While one of two wouldn't be disaster, with the Lanche, Wings, Kings, and Preds (who always give us fits) waiting at home every point is important.

As far as Morin, I get the long term thinking here but I genuinely think this kid can help us win games now.  So let's take the cue from our government and kick this can down the road.  Is he a dominant force now?  No, of course not.  But as you've mentioned various times, he's got a nose for the net and a pretty wicked shot.  I'd really love to see what he can do on a line with Hossa instead of replacing him where he'd certainly have more space to create his own shot, which he can do.  This Hawks team isn't filling the net, he can help out with that.

As for Sunday, I just loaded up on foot-warmers, wool socks, and thermals.  And of course, whiskey.  Lots and lots of whiskey.  If I come back in the same form as Han at the end of Empire, you'll have to fight off the Ombudsman for the Xbox, and he's got the proximity advantage on you.