Another home game and another disappointing finish, and this is not how we do it in Chicago right well especially since the Patrick Kane/Jonathan Toews era began? Sure it’s the dog days of winter when the wind chill is in the negatives their is snow on the ground and hockey players look forward to spring, beards, and the Stanley Cup playoffs.
One thing that is really missing since the calendar turned to 2015 is the Blackhawks defense and in particular Johnny Oduya. Oduya since arriving in Chicago in one of Stan Bowman great under the radar trading deadline deals in 2012 has been a very good defenseman paired mostly with Niklas Hjalmarsson usually getting the toughest defensive assignments and quietly one of the biggest reasons the Hawks won the Cup in 2013 and made it to Game #7 of the Western Conference Finals last season.
This season Bowman pulled the trigger in a deal he almost had to make and traded Nick Leddy and kept Oduya and while Leddy has solidified the Islanders back end with Johnny Boychuk, Oduya has been a hot mess most of the season but in particular the past few weeks where struggling is an understatement.
Oduya has been pinching when he shouldn’t be, he’s turning the puck over at a alarming rate, missing on passes and creating odd man breaks heading towards Corey Crawford.
The turnovers have been costly lately with most of them finding the back of the net, and most of the time he should be zigging when he’s zagging and vice versa and the problem is Oduya is getting paired with Michal Rozsival lately instead of Hjalmarsson which just makes things that even worse since Rozsival is a total mess but mainly because he’s old and shouldn’t be on the roster.
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The entire Blackhawks defense has been a mess lately and Oduya is the headmaster of this nightly chorus of mistakes and the end doesn’t seem to be in sight. It’s always darkest before the dawn and it’s been pretty dark watching the Hawks defense right now, but luckily it’s February and we are complaining about the Blackhawks defense now and not in late April or May.
Johnny Oduya has been missing for 2 months now and he is my Milk Carton nominee, who is your Milk Carton nominee from last night?
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