The honeymoon is officially over for the Chicago Blackhawks.
It was great while it lasted, but gone are the days when the Hawks could score 6 goals or more every night, as they did in three straight games in December. As Chicago approaches the Olympic break just over halfway through the season, they’re starting to look like a mediocre hockey club at best. A delayed Stanley Cup hangover apparently has struck, and created problems that have been made particularly apparent in January:
The Blackhawks (28-7-7) are ringing in the New Year with a familiar face finally back between the pipes. Corey Crawford, who has been out since Dec. 17 with a lower-body injury, will be back in the lineup as the Blackhawks face the New York Islanders (13-21-7) in their first matchup in 2014. The Hawks won the previous match 3-2 in Chicago, with Michal Handzus netting the game winner.
The New York Islanders, a team who has disappointed in the first half of the season after making the playoffs last year, are looking to build momentu...
There is nothing better than perfection and that is exactly what Antti Raanta and the Blackhawks were when they faced a very tough physical LA Kings team. Much has been said about the Kings’ back up netminder Martin Jones who was excellent as well but on this night it was Raanta that was perfect.
The game had all the feel of a playoff game with hard hitting and very close gaps and tight checking which, are staples of playoff games. This type of game should benefit the Kings, but it was the defending Stanley Cup champs that out LAed LA. It proved once again the Blackhawks can play any way you want them to.
The lone Blackhawks’ goal came in the first period by Brando...
The Hawks looked to keep rolling as they travelled to Nashville to face off against the Predators and former Hawks Carter Hutton and Viktor Stalberg. The last time the Hawks played in the Nashville rink this season, they were thoroughly beaten 7-2, but tonight walked away with a 3-1 win. Bryan Bickell made his return after missing roughly a month with a lower body injury, while Antti Raanta made 27 saves and Patrick Kane scored his team-leading 20th goal in the victory.
The Hawks got on the board early with a wicked shot by Duncan K...
Philadelphia came to Chicago tonight looking for a game against one of the league’s top teams to use as a measuring stick for their own success. After an embarrassing 7-2 thumping by the Hawks, they may want to reconsider that statement. 13 Blackhawk players would finish the game with at least a point, and Antti Raanta finished with a .933 SV%, proving yet again that he is a very capable goaltender. Ray Emery, who started against his former team, would allow six goals on 18 shots.
The game got off to a rough start right away, when Sheldon Brookbank and Wayne Simmonds dropped the glove a...
The Blackhawks were dominant in a 6-2 win against the Florida Panthers, scoring 3 of their 5 goals on the power play and staying perfect on the penalty kill. The win was tainted by an injury to starting netminder Corey Crawford, who lasted only 13:45 in the first period before being replaced by Antti Rannta. Raanta was solid, making 28 saves and allowing only two goals.
The Hawks came out jumping in the first, and needed only 70 seconds to take the lead. After a bad penalty by former Hawk Tomas Kopecky for high-sticking Niklas Hjalmarsson, Patrick Sharp blasted a high shot from the point on the ensuing power play past goalie Scott Clemmensen, who was screened on th...
For the first time this season, the Chicago Blackhawks took two losses in a row.
The Blackhawks gave up one goal to the Wild early in the first, an even-strength goal for Matt Cooke, 4:23 into the game. It would take until late in the second period for Minnesota to grab another goal, this one a power play goal by Zach Parise to make it 2-0.
Chicago was getting outshot and outworked for most of the first and second periods. The Blackhawks had just 7 shots through 27 minutes. They looked more like a team coming off a two-week road trip than a team that had a day off yesterday.
Jeremy Morin would get the Blackhawks on the board with just 17 seconds remaining ...
The Hawks and Canucks rivalry has dimmed over the last year as the teams have not faced each other in two consecutive playoff series. Tonight, however, the hockey didn’t disappoint and the game was fast and fiesty as the Hawks came from behind to take a 2-1 win. The game was fast and tight, with a battle between goalies Corey Crawford and Roberto Luongo, who went head to head and made 36 and 27 saves, respectively.
The Blackhawks started off strong in Winnipeg on Thursday night: commanding on the dot, strong defensively, and leading 1-0 after the first from a Patrick Kane laser shot.
Dustin Byfuglien would take a holding penalty for the Jets, followed by Duncan Keith taking a slashing penalty in order to prevent a goal. On the ensuing 4-on-4 play, Brandon Saad stretched the lead out to 2-0 just over 3 minutes into the second -- but the lead would last less than a minute.
Andrew Ladd would open up the scoring for Winnipeg 19 seconds after the Saad goal; and then, as the Byfulgien penalty expired, Keaton Ellerby put in his first of the year, a PPG, just 29 seconds later.