It might be a relatively small sugar pile, but I guess someone has to be on top.
The Terrifying Lows
- Tomas Kopecky - Listen, continually trashing a guy isn't fun, but in this case, it's almost unavoidable. Kopy might not be a top 6 performer for Disney on Ice much less a top 6 forward for this mediocre Hawks team (I don't know what that means either, but it's topical). Moving Kopy back and forth between wing and center until Sharp gets his groove back certainly isn't doing him any favors, but 1 measly point over the entire 6 game road trip (coupled with a minus 4) just isn't going to get it done. A career high in points for a 29 year old forward screams sell high, but maybe other GMs aren't as dumb as we think they are.
- Video Review or lack thereof - I'm not naive enough to think that the Hawks are losing out on a top 5 seed (or even a top 7 seed) due to officiating, but I think the 8th spot might look more attainable had a few calls gone our way against Vancouver and Dallas. It certainly would've been nice if Dave Bolland's disallowed goal against the Nucks would've been reviewable, and I still think the Hawks should've gotten the better end of one of the two critical reviews in Dallas. Make no mistake about it, if this team doesn't make the playoffs, the blood is on the players' hands, but not getting breaks adds to the frustration level for all involved.
The Dizzying Highs
- Daydream Nation - Hossa may be getting the short end of the stick without a real center feeding him the puck, but the simple fact of the matter is that Daydream Nation works. Numbers from the trip: [Toews - 2G, 8A, +7] [Kane - 5G, 4A, +2]. The kids' recent hot streak pushed Kane back to a near point/game pace (46 in 47) and Toews to the top of the team scoring sugar pile with 50 points. I'd love to believe that these numbers are evidence enough that the two should stay together, but we all know that's probably not the case with Q at the helm.
The Creamy Middles
- Troy Brouwer - If I told you that the Hawks have a player who is on pace to set a career high in points, will most likely be a 20-20 guy, is a plus player, experienced Dave Bolland's early season drought first hand (and lived to tell about it), leads the team in hits, and is the team's best and most consistent even strength net presence, would it make any sense to you that this player has spent time on all four lines this year? In my estimation, no one has done more with less opportunity than Troy Brouwer. TBrouw was rolling along with Daydream nation until he became a casualty of the Great Second Line Disappearing Act. The resulting line shake-ups have pushed Brouwer down to the second and third lines, which has understandably slowed his scoring punch, but he still managed to be a major factor on Saturday night with a goal and a nice goalie screen on Dunc's tally. Many will point to TBrouw's versatility as the reason he has been shuffled around while TomoKop gets square-pegged into the top 6 on a nightly basis, but I'm calling BS on that logic. Seabs contract situation is the one getting all of the recent press, but color me concerned that StanBow might wait around for either an offer sheet or an arbitration award that could end up being pricey with a talent like 22.