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Chicago Blackhawks: ‘Hawks Thoughts Week 2

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CHICAGO, IL - JANUARY 12: A Chicago Blackhawks fan cheers in the 3rd period during an NHL hockey game between the Vegas Golden Knights and the Chicago Blackhawks on January 12, 2019, at the United Center in Chicago, IL. (Photo By Daniel Bartel/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - JANUARY 12: A Chicago Blackhawks fan cheers in the 3rd period during an NHL hockey game between the Vegas Golden Knights and the Chicago Blackhawks on January 12, 2019, at the United Center in Chicago, IL. (Photo By Daniel Bartel/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /
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5 thoughts about the Chicago Blackhawks in Week 2 of the 2019-20 NHL season.

Every Friday, I will be going over 5 points of the Chicago Blackhawks week. If I miss anything, or you want to tell me to add something leading up to next week, DM me on Twitter @NikofromtheTO OR comment below!

I must start off by saying between the Hawks’ not having a game for a week then going losing and the Bears losing to the Raiders, this has been the longest week for me, sports-wise.

The moral of the story is that Chicago teams shouldn’t play overseas and weeklong lulls between hockey games are 10x longer than football. After a week of close to nothing new, the Blackhawks played their 2nd game and home opener against the Sharks on Thursday night. They lost 5-4.

I was there in person, watching first hand how gosh darn awful they played defensively. Yes, the whole team. Not just Seabrook, who even though I predicted to score, was really bad as well.

Let’s get into the 5 points of this week in Blackhawks. Also, please help me find a solid name for this series.

Dylan Strome is a Stat-Head

Before the game against the Sharks, Dylan Strome was asked about his love for stats. Apparently, he stays up all night looking at them. Which explains why he looks tired 24/7. Time to put a child timer on Stromer’s iPad so he gets some shut-eye.

He also scored a sweet “tap back” goal from Kaner on Thursday. Maybe he will sleep a little better knowing he did his part to a certain extent.

DNA Results: Andrew Shaw is 100% Blackhawk

If you’re a Chicago Blackhawks fan and don’t like Andrew Shaw, are you even human? Having been traded a couple of seasons ago, Shaw seemed to be making up for lost time, as “Shawzy” made his triumphant return to the UC on Thursday night and did not disappoint.

The only thing that would’ve made this night perfect is if they would’ve won. It was pretty close though. Shaw scored two goals and was in the middle of everything and everyone. Just like old times.

https://twitter.com/NBCSBlackhawks/status/1182463559390957568

It felt really good knowing that the ‘Hawks had some sandpaper back in the lineup that they were desperately missing since Shaw left the club. Interesting note, Shaw’s second goal of the night was assisted by Alex DeBrincat.

Why is that interesting you’re asking? Andrew Shaw was traded for two second-round picks in 2016. One of those picks turned into Alex DeBrincat and the other is Chad Krys, who is playing his first full season with the Rockford IceHogs!

Point being, Shaw scored a goal assisted by a draft pick he was traded for. Pretty meta if you ask me. Here is some more Shaw content for your viewing pleasure:

Andrew Shaw scored two goals on Thursday. His 2nd goal was a snipe.

Last, but not least, check out Shaw’s suit from the Red Carpet event!

Alexander Nylander

It’s not very often you go from 1st line to 3rd line to not playing at all. That’s just what Alexander Nylander did in his first home regular-season game for the Chicago Blackhawks.

As a Nylander hater, I am not surprised in the least that happened. He was such a non-factor that he may even be scratched for Saturday’s game.

With that said, here are today’s (10/11/19 at 1:00 PM) lines in practice, where it does not look promising for Nylander to play in 3 consecutive games.

Also, if you needed any more evidence of how bad Nylander was last night, here you go:

Meanwhile in Buffalo, Henri Jokiharju is flourishing. He and Marco Scandella have combined to be the definition of puck possession when they’ve been together this season. They lead all defensemen on the team in 5-on-5 scoring and venue adjusted Corsi per 60 minutes, according to Natural Stat Trick.

Entering play last night, the two were in the top 20 among all NHL defensemen in scored adjusted CF%. Suffice to say, this trade looks bad. REAL BAD. Take a look at where all Buffalo defensemen sit right now. Insane. Never thought I would see the day where I say, “I wish we had Buffalo’s defense.”

Can you retract trades? Is it too late?

DOMINANT Kubalik!

6 shots on goal and moved from the 3rd line to the 1st line. Plus, he scored the first goal of his career. Quite a night for Dominik Kubalik.

If he just had a little more accuracy on some of his other shot attempts, he could have scored 3. He was fast, played with energy and was ripping shots like nobodies business. Besides the one on the power play where he should’ve shot and decided to give it to Kane. I don’t blame him, but still. He was really fun to watch live on Thursday and was one of the surprises coming out of training camp earlier this fall.

Very good home debut for this young guy after playing over in the Czech Republic for the last couple of seasons. Hopefully, we get to see more of him on the upper lines as he looks to be a player that can slide up and down the lineup easily.

That defense and Corey Crawford

When you have a defense like the Hawks’, where 2-3 guys are learning a new system, things can get a little dicey. Things were a little dicey. What makes a good goaltender great is when things get dicey, they are there to clean it up. Through two games, Corey Crawford hasn’t been seen near a mop and it’s getting dirty. Nine goals allowed through two games is a lot.

https://twitter.com/NBCSSharks/status/1182486702897516545?s=20

The Blackhawks’ defense, in general, has been lackadaisical at best and it almost looked like a carbon copy of last week’s game against the Flyers. What interests me the most is who is coming out for Calvin de Haan when he comes in.

I haven’t been too thrilled with the play of the Olli Maatta and Brent Seabrook pairing, so maybe that gets shaken up. Maybe Coach Colliton does the unthinkable and scratches Seabrook for de Haan. Another interesting thing is whether or not Colliton has the trust of the fans let alone his team.

Here are some tweets from fans of the Chicago Blackhawks that aren’t exactly fans of ‘JC’. The subtweets below this initial tweet from Scott Powers are interesting, to say the least:

As you can see, the public isn’t too happy. They also want a “grown-up'”. Whatever that means. I am willing to give Coach more than just one season to figure it out. If Jeff Blashill still has his job, after working with the Red Wings for their entire rebuild, I think Colliton is safe at least for the foreseeable future.

This concludes this week’s 5 thoughts! Next week will have a bunch more since there will be more games, so look out for Blackhawks “Goal of the Week” from me and much more! If I missed anything, or you want to hate on me, post a comment down below or message me on Twitter @nikofromtheto.

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