Right out of the box Joel Quenneville threw a monkey wrench out there for the Red Wings with massive line changes. Michal Handzus was the game starter with Marian Hossa and Patrick Sharp. The line changes were designed to win faceoffs and maybe free up Jonathan Toews. The changes seemed to put some life into the Hawks in the first period with the defense jumping up making plays and creating a bunch of Red Wings turnovers. The Hawks weren’t able to capitalize on any of the chances, turnovers, or stretch passes that seemed to slow down the neutral zone trap that Detroit was using very effectively for the Red Wings. Toews had a 2 on 1 that was denied by Jimmy Howard and Sharp received a stretch pass that was turned away by Howard. The Hawks had a small shots on goal lead 12-10 but were only 9-24 from the faceoff circle. The one thing that looked to work in the first period was having Byran Bickell with Toews and Patrick Kane to put big hits on Henrik Zetterberg and whoever else was on the ice with him during the scoreless first period.
The second period was something Hawks fans have never seen before as Jonathan Toews took three straight minor penalties, and in the middle of the three of those penalties the Red Wings scored the first goal of the game when with :01 second remaining on the extra man advantage Jakub Kindl got one past Corey Crawford. It was apparent that Toews had lost his cool with the constant pressure by the every player on the Detroit roster. The Hawks had their chances but never could get it by Howard. The shots were tied 22-22 after 2 periods but 1-0 on the big board. The question is will this Hawks team respond with one period left to avoid a 3-1 hole in the series. Toews lost his mind and killed all the Hawks momentum they had built up in the first period.
The Hawks pushed hard but when they needed their stars to step up or a role player to step up but in the end of this game no one showed up. Brandon Saad got in and was hooked setting up a penalty with 4:46 left in the game but the Hawks served up their worst powerplay of the season. Jimmy Howard stopped every thing he saw which ended up being 25 shots. In the end the Red Wings put in an empty netter to finish off the Hawks 2-0. The Hawks are now pushed to the brink down 3-1 and will have to pull it all together in Chicago Saturday night.
-The Hawks were o for everytime they tried a stretch pass.
-Handzus playing anywhere is not a good idea. If you want to shake it up Saturday put someone young in. Pirri, Smith, Morin, Hayes??
-This had to be the worst game I ever seen the Captain play.
-So much for not getting the Sharks and having to play the Red Wings like everyone wanted, Babcock is outcoaching Quenneville by a mile.
-The Hawks didn’t lose in regulation in 24 straight to start the season so them winning three straight though a large task isn’t impossible.
-The Hawks were shut out for the first time all season and lost three straight for the first time all season.
-The Hawks 30-30 perfect penalty kill ended in the 2nd period.
-See You at Game 5 from the United Center, puck drops at 7pm
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Topics: Stanley Cup Playoffs