Good morning Chicago Blackhawks fans! Remember when the Chicago Blackhawks powerplay was horrible, yes I do too! The Thing is last night they scored twice with the man advantage after a long practice on Tuesday working on it.
The Chicago Blackhawks powerplay totals for the year are close to the bottom in the NHL, but they surprised us last night with two goals.
The first thing you noticed on the first powerplay goal was that the Hawks moved the puck around very quickly, and they played below the goal line when Nick Schmaltz passed it to Patrick Kane before he hit Brent Seabrook in the slot. This is a total change for the powerplay unit. Normally they get the puck to Jonathan Toews near the goal line and he has the option to shoot or pass cross ice.
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The puck movement was crisp and it forced the defense to keep moving which creates lanes for passing and eventually shooting which is way better then the four corners standing around powerplay the Hawks have used for years.
The second powerplay was all about hard work in front of the net by Artem Anisimov, yes Schmaltz picked up the goal but what a difference it is having the big body of #15 in front of the net.
Yes these are tough losses for the Hawks to be taking in the middle of January, but there game is starting to take form, and if they can get some consistent pressure and scoring from the powerplay they can start seeing some wins go into the right column and they can start heading up the standings.
Here are some morning links to start your day!
A 1-4-1 homestand wasn’t helpful to the Hawks playoff chances (Tribune)
A look at the Week that was for the Rockford IceHogs (The Rink)
What should the approach be to get back into the playoff race (CSN)
The Maple Leafs are all in with Mike Babcock (Editor In Leaf)
Nashville is a real contender this season (Predlines)
The Stars are starting to let their emotions get the best of them (Blackout Dallas)
A look at Studs and Duds around the NHL (TSN)
A Mighty Ducks TV Show is in early development (Puck Daddy)