Blackhawk Link-Up: The Huet Conundrum

By Jeffrey Bartl

Well, Cristobal Huet finally shit the bed bad enough for me to jump on the bandwagon of supporting a decrease in his playing time. I’ve been in the minority, been publicly scrutinized and continued to defend the man because I didn’t feel he’s been given a fair chance.

When that puck caromed off the stanchion, trickled softly toward the net and beat a daydreaming Huet for what turned out to be the deciding goal Saturday against Dallas, I lost it. Something needs to change, and I’ve finally come to grips with the fact that I’ve been wrong in my staunch support of the Frenchman.

But the Blackhawks are publicly getting behind Huet. From ‘Hawks captain Jonathan Toews, via the Tribune’s Chris Kuc:

"“(The criticism is) pretty unfair. There’s way more pressure on him than there should be. We all know he’s a key player on our team. We win as a team, we lose as a team. It’s not only frustrating for him but for us sometimes when we hear the jeers during the game. … He’s battling just as hard, if not harder than anybody in the locker room. It’s up to us to get a better effort in front of him.”"

So, where do the Blackhawks go from here?

  • Tim Sassone gives four options/solutions to the Huet saga. Sassone seemed to follow up the most on option No. 2 — send Huet to Rockford and bite the bullet on his $5-million-plus salary. (Between the Circles)
  • CT over at Hockee Night and I have been probably the biggest Huet backers despite his struggles. Saturday’s loss to Dallas prompted him to comment to me, “Mike Kiley is going to kill us on Monday.” Well, it’s Monday, and we’ll have to take what Kiley dishes out. The title of CT’s game recap screams out for both him and I. (Hockee Night)
  • This is the most accurate description of what I looked like in my seat Saturday at the United Center. (Second City Hockey)
  • Great point, like always, from the fellas over at Fifth Feather: Why the hell do you boo your goaltender — and sarcastically cheer — making him play in front of a hostile crowd even at home? I was pissed, but I wasn’t contributing to the boos. Bob, both you and I will be the quiet ones. (Fifth Feather)

It’s a long way until Wednesday when the Vancouver Canucks visit the UC, and we’re going to hear a hell of a lot more about the goaltending situation over the next three days than we do about the Canucks. So, what am I going to do?

I’m going to mercilessly make fun of the Sedin sisters each day, in between some updates about our goalies. God, I hate the Sedins.

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