Blackhawks News

Blackhawks Fall to Leafs 3-2

By Ericka McFee
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Nov 1, 2014; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Maple Leafs goaltender James Reimer (34) looks up as the Chicago Blackhawks and Toronto Maple Leafs pile into his crease during the third period at the Air Canada Centre. Toronto defeated Chicago 3-2. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Blackhawks Fall to Leafs 3-2

The Blackhawks were hoping to carry the momentum from their win against the Ottawa Senators on Thursday night, a game where Marian Hossa scored his 1,000th career NHL point. It was also the game where our #1 starting goaltender, Corey Crawford, returned after being sidelined with an injury for 6 games.

Unfortunately, on Saturday night the Hawks reverted back to the struggling team that we’ve watched in disbelief for many of their games this month.

In short, they lost because of an obnoxious number of turnovers, and because the Leafs goalie James Reimer had the game of his life. Here is the breakdown for each period:

FIRST PERIOD

The Leafs drew first blood a little over midway through the period, when Nazem Kadri joined in a 2-on-1 and tipped in a pass from Daniel Winnik. But just a little less than a minute later, the Hawks drew a penalty and managed to score a power play goal.

And not just any PPG, but one scored by Brad Richards – his first goal of the season, and more importantly, his first as a Hawk.

SECOND PERIOD

The Hawks have been notorious this season for dropping the ball during the middle 20 minutes of the game. Things started to seem promising enough, when Tyler Bozak was sent to the box for hooking Kris Versteeg, and the Hawks went back to the power play.

Brent Seabrook, who had already tallied a point earlier in the game from an assist of Richards’ goal, fired from the point and sent the puck blazing past Reimer.

The Leafs were quick to respond: just one minute later, James van Riemsdyk (the elder brother of rookie Hawks defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk) picked off a sloppy pass from Johnny Oduya in the Hawks’ own end and buried it to make it a tie 2-2 game.

Toward the end of the period, Niklas Hjalmarsson took a puck to the face, causing him to be a bit woozy and to have blood pretty much gushing down his face as he skated off the ice.

THIRD PERIOD

Fortunately for the Hawks, Hjalmarsson is made of Nerf, because he returned to the game at the beginning of the third period. Later on, he took another puck to his right leg that caused him to limp a bit. Like the Hawks defense generally, he was having a pretty rough night.

Early in the final frame, Peter Holland scored the go-ahead goal for the Leafs when teammate Leo Komarov made Oduya cough up a puck behind the net from a massive hit.

Despite two additional power play opportunities, and a flurry of other scoring chances, the Hawks just couldn’t even buy a goal to try at least tying the game and getting a point.

  • One-sided goalie battle: Crawford stopped 24 of 27 shots; Reimer stopped 45 (26 in the third period alone).
  • Hawks are 2-4 in the last 6 games – something’s gotta give.
  • Next game is tomorrow at home against the Winnipeg Jets.

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