Observations From Section 321: Escape From Nashville


Not exactly the way you would like it but the Blackhawks finally vanquished the Nashville Predators.  The Blackhawks game out roaring and for the first half of the game looked liked world beaters.  Then for the second straight game Corey Crawford and the Hawks coughed up a big lead.  Blowing a 4 goal lead is inexcusable, I don’t care who is injured and suspended that can not happen.  There was a lot of good and some bad to come out of last night’s win.  First and foremost the Blackhawks are in the playoffs and can do no worst than the 6th seed.  They still have a shot to move up to the 4th seed but will need some help.  They got another 2 points without the services of Jonathan Toews who has been cleared for contact and could return on Thursday night.  They have 5 points in 4 games without Duncan Keith and will get him back on Thursday as well.  This team has faced a ton of adversity with injuries, suspensions and 9 game losing streaks but they keep answering the bell.  They have been knocked to the  mat on numerous occasions but they keep getting up and throwing more punches.  I’ve ripped Joel Quenneville and questioned him many times but he deserves a lot of credit for keeping this team afloat and playing well in the face of adversity.  The Blackhawks are playing their best hockey of the season at the right time.

  • Corey Crawford was really good in the 1st period last night.  He made some huge saves that allowed the Blackhawks to build a 4 goal lead.  His team mates didn’t do him any favors in the second half  of the game. Crow’s save on Nick Spaling was one of the best I have seen him make in quite some time.  He looked confident for most of the game which is good going into the playoffs.  I still don’t have faith that Crow can take the Hawks to the promised land but he is the best we’ve got this season.  Crow got a taste of the post season last year and was pretty darn good versus the Canucks.  If he can repeat his performance from last season then the Hawks have a chance to beat any team they may face.
  • Two goals from the power play! The odds of the Blackhawks scoring 2 goals with the man advantage, in the same game, were bigger than me winning the Mega Millions.  Hopefully this is the boost the power play unit needed but I am not holding my breath on that one.
  • I am really liking Viktor Stalberg’s game right now.  His speed will cause fits for all opposing defenders come playoff time.
  • Dear Bryan Bickell, stop icing the damn puck you meathead!!
  • Andrew Shaw showed some great vision and hands with his sweet pass to Brent Seabrook to setup the game winning goal.   Seabrook did a great job pinching in to give the Hawks the lead.  This was a big makeup play considering Seabs and Sean O’Donnell were undressed by Alexander Radulov on Nashville’s 3rd goal.  Thank God tonight will be O’Donnell’s last game before being banished back to the pressbox.  No team should ever have a member of the Matlock fan club on its blue line.
  • I was hoping Patrick Kane blew a kiss to Barry Trotz after his breakaway goal.  Stick tap to Niklas Hjalmarrson for his great stretch pass to help spring Kaner.

My Blackhawks Player of the Game

Going to go with Brent Seabrook.  He scored the game winning goal and had an assist as well.  He has tied his career high with his 9th goal of the season.  He finished the game a plus one and played over 31 minutes.  Hopefully the Hawks can get out to a lead tonight and keep it to give Seabs and some of the other big guns a bit of break.

My Turd of the Game

Dave Bolland did score a power play goal but did more harm than good last night.  He had two dumb penalties that the Predators converted into two goals.  He also had a brutal turnover that almost lead to a short handed goal for Nick Spaling.  Thankfully Crow made the huge save.  We won’t even talk about Bolly’s bad night at the dot.