It's now technically New Year's Eve and I'm sure you all have much better things to do (read: whiskey) than sit around a computer and read what any of the three of us have to say about this game.. but here we go anyway. I'm really not sure how upset I should be about this one... or if I should be upset at all. The game was a solid one... except for all the goddamn mistakes. Both teams were guilty of some of the cardinal sins of hockey (giving up goals or taking penalties in the final minutes of a period) but the Sharks ultimately came out on top. All momentum should have been on the Hawks side after two goals in less than 30 seconds to end the second but it wasn't meant to be. Joe Thornton scores the game winner because this is December and he hasn't turned into a pumpkin yet and Ryane Clowe, who is a major pain in the ass, gets his customary goal against the Hawks. Not a fun one to lose but not one that I really had a great feeling about coming into anyway. Lets get right to the bullets so we can all get back to the drinking.
- We'll start these off right away with Marty Turco, who was an adventure tonight. His high-wire act was once again in full force right from the start as we saw some great puck handling, a horrendous turnover that didn't end up a goal thanks to Seabrook and a shot for the Sharks that had absolutely no reason to be a goal.. but was. A .833 Sv% just doesn't look good though, no matter how many big saves you come up with throughout the game. I understand his record and stats aren't completely his fault but really can't wait for Crawford to come back. Sorry Turcs, you deserve better.
- We're all agreed that Patrick Sharp has to be the one to step up his game with Toews out, eh? Hossa may be the second most complete player behind the captain but it's the shooter that will need to fill the void more than anyone else. Seabrook shouldn't be too far behind him though. Wearing the weight of an A on his sweater brought out a lot of good from biscut who jumped into the offensive zone a few times tonight which is a welcome sight... sort of.
- Peanut Tillman wore Dustin Byfuglien's number in the shoot the puck contest... awwwwkkwwwarrd.
- I'm still completely obsessed with Tomas Kopecky and it very well could be the death of me (either that or the booze anyway). I've got a horrible feeling that this season is largely going to come down to the play of guys like him. When he's good (the pass to Sharp for the first goal), the Hawks are going to be all the more dangerous. When he's bad (stupid penalties, horrible whiffs), the Hawks suffer. I'm getting horrible nightmares that a huge game goes to a shootout and somehow ends up with the puck on his stick.
- Speaking of TomoKop, McClure wondered aloud why he was sent out to take a draw post faceoff. The sad fact may be that he was the most successful Hawk at the draw tonight, winning 53% of his faceoffs. Dowell ended up even and everyone else was far below. Toews has been the only consistent center and the Hawks game could suffer without those wins.... Fuck me
- Spare me any thoughts about how the Hawks should have kept Niemi over signing Turco. Yes, Nemo's 3-0 over the Hawks and the stats look amazing... but he's still got a losing record and a .900 Sv% overall. He wasn't amazing tonight but finds a way to win against the Hawks so far... please wait until he finds a way to do this against the rest of the league.
- Ok.. it's time for bed. A very happy new year to all of you from myself and the rest of the SCH team. Please take a cab or the CTA tonight.
- Oh.. and it's not too late for you to "like" the SCH page of Facebook and help us dominate the SBN hockey blogs. Please and thank you.