So the title is a bit melodramatic, but color me annoyed nonetheless.
Forty-nine minutes, twenty-five seconds. It was all going well enough for that amount of time, and then it all came crumbling down. This is the kind of loss that can undo much of the good that was done over the last four games. The Hawks were at home, facing a very mediocre Dallas team and its backup goalie, and they let one slip away in the last ten minutes of a game that they appeared to have by the balls.
The first period was an ugly 11 (total) shot affair, in which neither team seemed to get much offensive flow going, some of which can be attributed to the poor condition of the UC ice. The second period was all Hawks, and thanks to some great work on the forecheck by Michael Frolik, Marian Hossa opened the scoring midway through the frame. Several quality chances and a couple goal posts later, the Hawks took what seemed to be a fairly comfortable 1 goal lead into the final period.
Nine minutes into the third, just when you're starting to let the "S" word creep into your mind, the Stars turned two Marian Hossa mistakes into the equalizer. The Hawks won the draw in the Dzone, but Seabs impatiently fired the puck up the boards to Hossa, who took a bad angle to meet the ring-a-round and then turned the puck over shortly thereafter; Steve Ott redirected a Trevor Daley point shot, and the game was tied at 1. The Hawks spent the rest of the period on their heels and hoping for overtime, and they paid for it. With about 5 minutes to go in the game, Dallas got another soft point shot on net, and this time it was Michael Ryder there to tip it home. With the game still somewhat in doubt, Nick Leddy turned the puck over at center ice, and got spun around trying to get back on the subsequent two on one; he got up just in time to see Michael Ryder pinball a shot off of Brent Seabrook's leg and Loui Eriksson stick, and past a befuddled Corey Crawford . I hope you enjoyed the broadcast, in spite of arguably the worst 10 minutes of hockey (considering the situation) that the Hawks have played this season.
- Patrick Kane managed to follow up Tuesday's dominant performance with a pretty listless effort tonight. Kane had been on a nice little run heading into this game, but for a guy who's on pace for a career low 65 points this season, and with the team's best all around forward on the shelf, we need more than "a nice little run."
- Hey! Michael Frolik made a play, so there's that.
- Brent Seabrook had a game that he'd certainly like to forget. Seabs was a team worst -5 in CORSI tonight, and was on the ice for all three goals against.
- I think I've heard from Konroyd (a couple of times) and maybe even from one of the assistant coaches, that Dylan Olsen's skating is a strength of his. I like many things that I've seen from Olsen in his time with the big club, but his skating is not one of those things. If Olsen can't develop a much quicker first step than what he's currently sporting, he'll soon find himself subject to the Niklas Hjalmarsson rules of pinching: 1) Unless we're down by 1 in the final two minutes of the third, don't even fucking think about it and 2) see rule number 1. Assuming his positioning continues to improve, Olsen will be a good one for the Hawks, but I'd like to move his skating ability off of Konroyd's Keys and on to Areas For Improvement.
- At this point, it might be more likely that on my walk to work tomorrow morning I see Kim Johnsson riding a unicorn down State Street than it is that this Hawks team will get a shutout in the 2011-2012 season. Just when you think this team is in a groove defensively, they just get sloppy and lazy, and pucks start finding the back of their net with a high degree of regularity.
- Tomorrow it will be one month to the day since the last Hawks powerplay goal. Anyone want to give me 5 to 1 odds that they don't get one by St. Patrick's Day? (Remember, nothing that happens on Leap Day counts)
- The Hawks played this game like they were entitled to two points against an inferior Stars team after no one expected them to beat both St. Louis and Detroit in the same week. They took their foot off the gas, and kept it off the gas even after Dallas tied the game. The Hawks got some tough bounces to be sure, three redirected goals in one game is a rare occurence, but there's no excuse for getting out shot by 10 in a tight third period game at the UC. What would have looked like a confident team heading out west on a 5 game win streak now looks like a bad road team trying to get things right in the white sweaters while the red-hot Yotes bear down on them. To add to all of that, a two game west coast weekend swing at this time of year typically means that it's one of those "wonderful" family trips that the Hawks sponsor. I think it's the
Dads' Moms' Brother-in-Laws'Third Cousins' Trip this year. I look forward to seeing many heart warming photos of Marian Hossa riding segways on Rodeo Drive with his beloved cousin Ctislav.