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Canadiens Fall to Blackhawks

The Montreal Canadiens were in Chicago tonight, looking to break their three-game losing streak against the Blackhawks, but were unsuccessful in doing so, losing 5-1. Not only have the Canadiens lost a fourth straight game, but Interim Head Coach Randy Cunneyworth is still without his first career win, going 0-3 since the firing of Jacques Martin.

The game opened up with a relatively quiet first. Despite some good chances for both teams early on, the period would end scoreless. It was a good, back-and-forth twenty minutes of hockey with both teams registering seven shots on goal. There wasn't much in the way of action, as the only notable statistic on the score-sheet was a hooki...

An Original Six matchup in Chicago tonight

Tonight at the United Center, the Blackhawks will host a classic Original Six matchup against the Montréal Canadiens. These teams have only met up once a year - and not even every season - over the past several years. Next season, fans will get to see them twice a season, which will be a great addition to the schedule.

In the meantime, despite a loss against the Pittsburgh Penguins last night, the Blackhawks still sit atop the standings with 46 points. The struggling Canadiens are on the low side of the bubble for the playoffs watch (33 pts); they just fired their coach Jacques Martin last Saturday, with Randy Cunneyworth currently handling coaching duties for the team.
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Isles Fall To Blackhawks in Shootout 5-4

Friday night's game against the Chicago Blackhawks was arguably the most exciting game the Islanders have played in all season. The Islanders came into this game looking for their third straight win but came out with a well deserved point.

The Chicago native Al Montoya was the one chosen by Jack Capuano to start for the Isles. Montoya, playing in his third straight game, made some unbelievable saves throughout the whole matchup. Facing the Islanders was the 26 year old Corey Crawford.

But enough about the goaltenders, let's talk about the offense. It was a real positive to see the Islanders scoring creative goals. Poking at rebounds and capitalizing on special teams. In past games, the Isles have used the dump and chase method, which obviously has not been working. It was great to see players go to the next and try to make a play instead of players just throwing the puck at the net and hoping for the best.

Chicago's penalty kill has not been the best this season and the Islanders definitely capitalized, scoring two goals with the man advantage. But the Blackhawks had their share of capitalizing on special teams as well. Chicago was able to score a powerplay goal and a shorthanded goal against the Isles.

The goalscorers for the Islanders tonight were Kyle Okposo, Matt Moulson, PA Parenteau, and scoring his first goal of the season was Nino Niederreiter. Focusing on Okposo, it really seems as if he is in his required game shape. He is making plays and hustling much better than he had in the beginning of the season.

The Blackhawks offense never quits either; with goals coming from Andrew Brunette, Ben Smith, Jonathan Toews, and Patrick Sharp.

So it came down to a shootout. Jonathan Toews was lone scorer and was able to claim victory over the New York Islanders, 5-4.

If the Islanders can play the way they have played in the last week for the rest of the season, they will be in good shape.

Be sure to follow the Isles' The Checking Line page on Twitter and like us on Facebook!

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter! (@EvanPivnickNYI)

The Blackhawks are winning, but what needs work?

Does anybody else find it odd that Daniel Carcillo is leading the team with +/-, at +5? Carcillo has been a pleasant surprise so far, playing - dare we say it - smart.

Last year, the main word that was used to describe the Chicago Blackhawks all season long was "consistency". The team didn't have it; couldn't get any major winning streaks going; and most of the time, couldn't put together a third period to finish off opponents, leaving points on the table strewn across the league.

This year, the Blackhawks have come out of the gate hot. There's a lot to be thrilled about as a fan - a lot of production; team chemistry on the ice clearly there from open...

Hawks Thoughts - Game Day 10/18/11 @ Coyotes

Chicago Blackhawks are getting set to battle their southwest neighbors, Phoenix Coyotes, tonight at Jobing.com Arena (Glendale Arena). Game time is 9 pm central and is being broadcasted on WGN for you local Chicago folks. I apologize for the brevity of this post, as I was out of town this past weekend and am still catching up on loose ends.

The Hawks are well on their way towards being a great regular season team provided they can pick up a few of the missing pieces before reaching the mid-season mark. Patrick Kane continues to be an offensive force with 6 pts in 4 games playing at Center, winning 56.5% of his faceoffs, and he has not hurt his team de...

Game Day: Chicago Blackhawks @ Phoenix Coyotes

The Coyotes saved very little visible emotion for their former selves on Saturday, shelling the Jets' opposition with 34 shots compared to only 19 in return on their way to a 4-1 win.  Now the 2-1-0-1 'Yotes face off against the 2-1-0-1 Blackhawks, who are coming off a shootout loss against the Boston Bruins.  Half of the four matchups between Phoenix and Chicago last year went to a shootout.

While their records through the first four games are identical, their power plays are not.  Chicago even allowed a shorthanded goal on Saturday, and their record sits at 11.8%  compared to the Coyotes' 23.8%.  Last year, the Blackhawks went for a combin...

Hawks vs Caps - Preseason Game 3 Notes

 

Pittsburgh area native Brandon Saad will be playing in his 3rd straight Hawks preseason game tonight against Washington at the UC. Now, let's not read into this too much. Saad has had a very impressive camp for an 18 year-old just out of his first season in the OHL, but it's highly unlikely that he will not be returning to his junior team. It's safe to say that Saad will need an additional season in the OHL to further his development and hopefully become more than a point-per-game player at the junior level.

However, getting multiple appreciative comments from your head coach on your play at this level is nothing to sneeze at. Saad...

Blackhawks Goalie Situation a Win-Win-Win

Often times in sports, the rich get richer.

Teams categorized as “contenders” often have the luxury of taking chances on certain guys, or even just getting a quality player at a discounted rate (see: Vokoun, Tomas).

Oddly enough, the Blackhawks' circle of goalies starts with Vokoun. At the deadline in 2010, he was rumored to be Stan Bowman’s primary trade target as many believed the tandem of Antti Niemi and Cristobal Huet would not be enough to make the Hawks a serious Stanley Cup contender.The Hawks and Panthers could never find a deal and Niemi’s wonderful run proved the doubters wrong anyhow.

Niemi&rsquo...