Blackhawks News

Chicago Blackhawks’ Week Ahead Finishes Tripping

By Colin Likas
Mar 26, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Boston Bruins defenseman Kevan Miller (86) attempts to shoot the puck against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 26, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Boston Bruins defenseman Kevan Miller (86) attempts to shoot the puck against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports /
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Welcome to the penultimate look at the regular-season week ahead for the Chicago Blackhawks. That’s right, we’re down to six games spread across two weeks before the 2016 Stanley Cup playoffs. But don’t worry, Blackhawks fans. Unlike fans of the seven Canadian teams, we’ll get to see at least four postseason games involving our favorite hockey club.

The Blackhawks are coming off back-to-back wins against really bad opponents during which only the bottom-six forwards and Scott Darling looked anything resembling good. The Blackhawks upended the Calgary Flames on Saturday before clinching their eighth straight playoff berth with a win against the Canucks on Sunday. The schedule switches up to a mix of playoff and non-playoff teams the rest of the way, so it was good for the Blackhawks to secure four points as they could, especially with Nashville hardly ever losing of late.

Let’s get to our individual stats update before we move on to the Central Division standings and a glance at the Blackhawks’ opponents for this week.

Forwards

Artem Anisimov: 74 games, 19 goals, 19 assists, plus-6 rating, 12 penalty minutes, 117 shots

a-Kyle Baun: 2 games, 0 goals, 0 assists, minus-2 rating, 0 penalty minutes, 1 shot

a-Bryan Bickell: 23 games, 0 goals, 2 assists, minus-4 rating, 2 penalty minutes, 21 shots

c-Phillip Danault: 30 games, 1 goal, 4 assists, minus-3 rating, 6 penalty minutes, 48 shots

d-Marko Dano: 13 games, 1 goal, 1 assist, 0 rating, 2 penalty minutes, 15 shots

Andrew Desjardins: 71 games, 7 goals, 5 assists, minus-7 rating, 30 penalty minutes, 93 shots

Tomas Fleischmann: 13 games, 4 goals, 1 assist, minus-1 rating, 2 penalty minutes, 17 shots

c-Ryan Garbutt: 42 games, 2 goals, 4 assists, minus-7 rating, 25 penalty minutes, 81 shots

a-Ryan Hartman: 3 games, 0 goals, 1 assist, minus-1 rating, 0 penalty minutes, 3 shots

a-Vincent Hinostroza: 7 games, 0 goals, 0 assists, minus-1 rating, 6 penalty minutes, 6 shots

Marian Hossa: 62 games, 12 goals, 19 assists, plus-11 rating, 22 penalty minutes, 182 shots

Patrick Kane: 76 games, 39 goals, 55 assists, plus-16 rating, 30 penalty minutes, 264 shots

a-Tanner Kero: 17 games, 1 goal, 2 assists, minus-2 rating, 2 penalty minutes, 26 shots

Marcus Kruger: 35 games, 0 goals, 1 assist, minus-3 rating, 20 penalty minutes, 43 shots

Andrew Ladd: 13 games, 6 goals, 3 assists, plus-2 rating, 6 penalty minutes, 27 shots

Brandon Mashinter: 36 games, 3 goals, 1 assist, minus-4 rating, 18 penalty minutes, 18 shots

a-Mark McNeill: 1 game, 0 goals, 0 assists, 0 rating, 0 penalty minutes, 0 shots

Artemi Panarin: 74 games, 25 goals, 39 assists, plus-5 rating, 32 penalty minutes, 169 shots

Richard Panik: 26 games, 5 goals, 2 assists, plus-5 rating, 2 penalty minutes, 36 shots

Dennis Rasmussen: 42 games, 4 goals, 4 assists, plus-8 rating, 4 penalty minutes, 40 shots

b-Jiri Sekac: 6 games, 0 goals, 1 assist, minus-1 rating, 2 penalty minutes, 11 shots

Andrew Shaw: 76 games, 14 goals, 20 assists, plus-14 rating, 64 penalty minutes, 150 shots

Teuvo Teravainen: 72 games, 13 goals, 21 assists, plus-1 rating, 12 penalty minutes, 132 shots

b-Viktor Tikhonov: 11 games, 0 goals, 0 assists, minus-4 rating, 6 penalty minutes, 11 shots

Jonathan Toews: 75 games, 25 goals, 26 assists, plus-16 rating, 60 penalty minutes, 165 shots

Dale Weise: 10 games, 0 goals, 1 assist, plus-2 rating, 2 penalty minutes, 12 shots

Defensemen

c-Trevor Daley: 29 games, 0 goals, 6 assists, plus-1 rating, 8 penalty minutes, 43 shots

Christian Ehrhoff: 6 games, 0 goals, 2 assists, plus-1 rating, 2 penalty minutes, 14 shots

Erik Gustafsson: 36 games, 0 goals, 12 assists, plus-9 rating, 2 penalty minutes, 51 shots

Niklas Hjalmarsson: 76 games, 2 goals, 21 assists, plus-15 rating, 32 penalty minutes, 74 shots

Duncan Keith: 66 games, 9 goals, 34 assists, plus-13 rating, 16 penalty minutes, 130 shots

Michal Rozsival: 45 games, 1 goal, 10 assists, plus-3 rating, 31 penalty minutes, 39 shots

a-David Rundblad: 9 games, 0 goals, 2 assists, minus-2 rating, 6 penalty minutes, 13 shots

c-Rob Scuderi: 17 games, 0 goals, 0 assists, minus-6 rating, 0 penalty minutes, 14 shots

Brent Seabrook: 76 games, 13 goals, 29 assists, plus-6 rating, 26 penalty minutes, 157 shots

Viktor Svedberg: 21 games, 2 goals, 2 assists, minus-4 rating, 2 penalty minutes, 33 shots

Trevor van Riemsdyk: 76 games, 3 goals, 9 assists, minus-1 rating, 29 penalty minutes, 77 shots

Goaltenders

Corey Crawford: 57 starts, 35 wins, 18 losses, 4 OT losses, 7 shutouts, .926 save percentage, 2.32 goals-allowed average

Scott Darling: 19 starts, 9 wins, 7 losses, 3 OT losses, 1 shutout, .917 save percentage, 2.48 goals-allowed average

Michael Leighton: 0 starts, 0 wins, 0 losses, 0 OT losses, 0 shutouts, .941 save percentage, 1.54 goals-allowed average

(a-demoted to Rockford; b-waived and claimed; c-traded)

More from Blackhawks News

Hooray, I finally got to update Kruger’s stats again. It’s been a long time coming for the bottom-six center, who has made a positive impact on the team since his return Saturday against Calgary. He’s flipping the ice most of the time when he gets out there, and he’s helping create scoring chances for his team. That’s probably even more than we could’ve expected to have asked of Kruger coming off a broken wrist that sidelined him for multiple months.

Shaw also had a nice week with key points against Calgary and Vancouver, and he seems to be settling in nicely back in the bottom six. He could see a promotion back to the top line if the Blackhawks’ top six continue to struggle and if Joel Quenneville is feeling particularly blender-y, but I think he’s got the right idea leaving Shaw in the bottom six. He’s meshed well with the likes of Kruger, Desjardins, Fleischmann, Teuvo and Panik.

But it was a tough week for the top six, even though Ladd potted three goals in three games. We’re still not really seeing him that often, and the same could be said of guys like Toews, Hossa and Panarin. Regarding the last of those three guys, Panarin was not credited with one shot over the last three games. That’s obviously an issue, and it could be a product of teams studying up on Panarin and learning his tendencies, but the young Russian has also gotten a little too fancy of late. His turnovers are becoming a little more egregious, and it’s something that needs to be corrected before the playoffs.

Darling continues to perform pretty well in Crow’s steed, and he projects to receive most, if not all, of the final six starts if Crow remains sidelined through the last two weeks.

On to the Central Division standings.

Dallas: 45-22-9, 99 points, 43 regulation/overtime wins, 247 goals for, 218 goals against

St. Louis: 45-22-9, 99 points, 40 regulation/overtime wins, 203 goals for, 185 goals against

Chicago: 44-25-7, 95 points, 43 regulation/overtime wins, 212 goals for, 188 goals against

Nashville: 39-24-13, 91 points, 35 regulation/overtime wins, 213 goals for, 194 goals against

Minnesota: 37-28-11, 85 points, 34 regulation/overtime wins, 206 goals for, 189 goals against

Colorado: 39-33-4, 82 points, 35 regulation/overtime wins, 204 goals for, 215 goals against

Winnipeg: 31-38-7, 69 points, 29 regulation/overtime wins, 194 goals for, 223 goals against

More from Blackhawk Up

The division title is probably coming down to the Stars and Blues, unless the Blackhawks decide to start beating teams that aren’t in the running for this year’s top overall draft pick. Dallas has overcome a plethora of injuries to stay tied atop the division, while the St. Louis is shutting out everyone in sight. That’s not an exaggeration, either: The Blues are going for a league-record-tying fifth straight whitewash tonight against Colorado.

Speaking of the Avs, they’re getting close to “need to win every game” territory in order to qualify for the playoffs. The Predators are firmly planting themselves in the postseason picture, needing a win tonight against Dallas and an Avs regulation loss against the Blues. One of those scenarios is a little easier to imagine than the other.

And then there’s the Wild, who have won five straight going into tonight’s tilt against the Blackhawks. They really want to face the Stars or Blues in a playoff series. I guess it worked out decently last year.

Let’s take a glance at the three teams the Blackhawks will take on this week.

Next: Glance At Minnesota, Winnipeg And Boston

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