Observations From Section 321 : Monday Evening Coming Down

Blackhawks lose 3-1 at the Joe and now trail the Red Wings 2-1.

concern - to be a care, trouble, or distress to

panic - a sudden overwhelming fear, with or without cause, that produces hysterical or irrational behavior, and that often spreads quickly through a group of persons or animals.

We should all be concerned with the Hawks Game 3 loss, and trailing the Detroit Red Wings 2-1 in a best of seven series. Do we need to hit the panic button yet? No. Now if the Hawks drop Game 4 Thursday night, then it's time for a mass freak out. Last night's game is the type of game that make me wish the internet would swallow itself whole. There are a lot of people who are breaking their ankles jumping off the Blackhawks bandwagon and that's fine. We will remember who you are when you try and get back on. Some people think the Hawks got blown away last night. That just isn't true. Game 3 was a much better performance than Game 2, but there is still room for improvement. It took and bad 31 seconds, 3 goal posts and a horrible call on a disallowed goal in order for the Wings to pull off the win. Being down 2-1 is not a death sentence. A win on Thursday makes this a best 2 out of 3 series with two games at the United Center.

The Hawks played a decent 1st period as they out shot the Wings 15-9. Their first power play of the night actually looked good. They showed great movement and did everything but score a goal. The Wings gave the Hawks the middle of the ice during the first period, but that changed after the first intermission.

The 2nd period started with an early power play for the Hawks. After the power play ended they were able to keep the puck in the Detroit zone for over 2 minutes but came up with nothing to show for it. I am pretty sure I wasn't the only one who thought that not scoring a goal on that sequence would end up biting them in the ass later. The Wings opened the scoring at 7:49 of the middle frame on a play that started with the theme of the night; a Blackhawks faceoff loss. Andrew Shaw lost the draw in his own end and Damien Brunner quickly got the puck out to center ice where a streaking Gustav Nyquist got control of it. Once Nyquist gained the zone he faked an over committed Brent Seabrook right out of his breezers and got the puck past Corey Crawford. Things went from bad to worse as the openly gray Drew Miller deflected a puck past Crow just 31 seconds later for a 2-0 Wings lead. The play was caused by a terrible Michal Roszival turnover in his own end. The fact that all 3 forwards, the 4th line, were heading out of the zone early instead of taking care of their defensive responsibilities didn't help things either.

The Hawks played a pretty good 3rd period, at least until the wheels came off. Patrick Kane got the Hawks on the board with his 2nd goal in as many games. The play started with a borderline hit on Johan Franzen, behind the Wings net, from Niklas Hjalmarsson. It looked as if Franzen turned his back to Hjammer at the very last second. As Franzen laid dying on the ice, Duncan Kieth lifted a long pass and hit Kaner, at center ice, streaking in for the momentum changing goal. Just over a minute later it looked as if the Hawks tied the game on a Viktor Stalberg goal, but it was waived off for goaltender interference by Andrew Shaw. More on the call in the bullets but that was turning point of the game. And just over a minute later Pavel Datsyuk made the game 3-1 with the primary assist coming from a miraculously recovered Franzen, who may or may not have been offside on the play. The remainder of the game got a bit ugly for the Hawks as their frustration showed and they lost their composure. Now they get two days off to come back and realize they have to work to win this series. They are going to have to more than just put their sticks on the ice to win a hockey game. It will be interesting to see if the extra day off kills the Wings momentum like it seemed to do to the Hawks after Game 1.

* Let's start off with the play that changed the game, the Stalberg disallowed goal, shall we? The NHL rule book states "Goals should be disallowed only if: (1) an attacking player, either by his positioning or by contact, impairs the goalkeeper's ability to move freely within his crease or defend his goal; or (2) an attacking player initiates intentional or deliberate contact with a goalkeeper, inside or outside of his goal crease." None of this happened on the play. It was a flat out blown call. Shaw was in the crease, but was not allowed to leave the area by both Detroit defenders. He never made contact with Howard, nor was Howard impaired in anyway shape or form from make the save. Tomas Holmstrom made a living by this same exact play for years at the Joe. These types of calls should be allowed to be reviewed and overturned. I am not one to blame the outcome of games on officiating, and the Hawks did not lose just because of this call, but it completely changed the momentum. Had the goal counted, like it should have, the Wings would have been on their heels and the crowd would have been taken out of the game. The officiating, across the league, has been piss poor in the playoffs so far. In every series, I am amazed on some of the calls that are being made and some of the plays that get uncalled. In the end, the Blackhawks cannot worry about things they have no control over.

* Speaking of Andrew Shaw, its time for him to sit one out. 18 penalty minutes in 3 games is not getting it done. I firmly believe if it was any other player wearing a white sweater in the crease, on the disallowed goal, the call never would have been made. But, Shaw has spent the entire series playing like an uncontrolled penis and it caught up to him.

* Corey Crawford has been good in this series, but Jimmy Howard and been great. He has bailed his team out numerous time thus far. We could have used a big bail out save from Crow on the Datsyuk goal but we didn't get it. Crawford went down a bit early and Datsyuk made him pay upstairs. In Crow's defense, Datsyuk is one of the few guys in the league that can pull off that shot.

* The Hawks bread and butter play, since Q took over, has been the defenseman making the first pass to lead the rush out of the defensive zone. In the 2nd and 3rd periods of the game the Wings defensemen were stepping up to prevent that first pass and it caused all kinds of fits for the Hawks offense. We are probably going to need to see more of the types of passes that we saw on the Kane goal to open up the ice again in Game 4.

* The Corsi numbers should make you feel a bit better about how the Hawks played and be encouraging going into Game 4. The Hawks got 40 shots on goal, while attempting 66 total shots. The Wings got 30 pucks to the net while attempting 48 shots. 14 of the Hawks 40 shots came from defensemen.

* The Blackhawks just lost another faceoff....

* You can't say Jonathan Toews is scoreless because he isn't trying. He lead the team with 7 shots on goal and is not backing down from the Wings physical play. But, with that being said, any time you want to score Cap, it would be much appreciated.

* Niklas Hjalmarsson was the most improved Blackhawk from Game 2. I also think its safe to say that the real Brent Seabrook will not be showing up this year. He has been brutal in this series and looks so slow on the ice.

Blackhawks Corsi Numbers

Player Pos ES TOI Total Shots For Total Shots Against Corsi Net Zone Starts Adjusted Corsi
Duncan Keith D 18:59 31 9 +22 +4 +20
Niklas Hjalmarsson D 16:26 24 9 +15 +4 +13
Brent Seabrook D 10:43 14 11 +3 -2 +4
Nick Leddy D 9:58 9 12 -3 -2 -2
Patrick Sharp R 12:08 20 6 +14 +2 +13
Marcus Kruger C 6:30 4 9 -5 -1 -5
Jonathan Toews C 13:34 22 5 +17 +2 +16
Brandon Saad L 16:43 19 13 +6 +3 +5
Viktor Stalberg L 9:25 12 8 +4 +1 +4
Michal Handzus C 6:48 8 8 0 -1 +0
Johnny Oduya D 14:09 10 15 -5 +3 -6
Bryan Bickell L 10:23 10 9 +1 0 +1
Michal Rozsival D 15:51 12 16 -4 +3 -5
Dave Bolland C 10:04 9 13 -4 +4 -6
Andrew Shaw C 11:47 11 9 +2 0 +2
Michael Frolik R 4:45 4 8 -4 0 -4
Marian Hossa R 11:26 18 4 +14 +2 +13
Patrick Kane R 16:16 18 16 +2 +3 +1

Red Wings Corsi Numbers

Player Pos ES TOI Total Shots For Total Shots Against Corsi Net Zone Starts Adjusted Corsi
Brendan Smith D 16:09 13 20 -7 -2 -6
Jakub Kindl D 13:02 17 10 +7 -2 +8
Justin Abdelkader L 15:29 15 10 +5 -3 +6
Daniel Cleary R 13:10 6 20 -14 -3 -13
Pavel Datsyuk C 15:24 15 13 +2 -4 +4
Gustav Nyquist C 8:36 7 10 -3 -1 -3
Patrick Eaves R 5:04 7 9 -2 +2 -3
Drew Miller L 6:25 6 12 -6 +3 -7
Damien Brunner C 8:28 9 7 +2 -1 +2
Cory Emmerton C 3:54 7 4 +3 +2 +2
Kyle Quincey D 13:00 11 12 -1 -2 -0
Carlo Colaiacovo D 12:48 17 10 +7 -2 +8
Henrik Zetterberg L 13:51 7 22 -15 -2 -14
Valtteri Filppula C 15:48 7 21 -14 -4 -12
Jonathan Ericsson D 16:29 7 28 -21 -1 -21
Niklas Kronwall D 16:01 7 25 -18 -1 -18
Joakim Andersson C 8:48 8 8 0 -1 +0
Johan Franzen C 12:34 14 9 +5 -3 +6