The Chicago Blackhawks dropped yet another important game in regulation.
The Blackhawks were destroyed by the Predators once again, losing the game 5-2. They did not come to play, Duncan Keith gave away a horrible pass for a Predators’ breakaway goal, Nikita Zadorov was not in a good position to keep Jarnkrok away from the puck. The only positive here is that the Blackhawks managed to kill every powerplay the Predators got. After that? Not really.
Kevin Lankinen allowed five goals, three shots on a deflection. This is not on Lankinen as deflected shots are the hardest to save for any goalie. The three goals from deflections is solely based on the Blackhawks’ defense woeful attempt to stop the two forwards crowding the front of the net. How do you stop the Predators’ offensive game plan? You keep them away from the front of the net. Did the Blackhawks do this? Nope, in fact, they allowed many wide-open shots in front of the net instead.
Is it too early to give up on the Chicago Blackhawks?
This team has not been able to defeat the Predators at all this season, and I don’t think this stat will change if the ‘Hawks can’t find ways to stop the Predators forwards from getting to, and crashing the net. It’s also worth mentioning that the Blackhawks are now behind the Stars by a point in the standings.
However, the Blackhawks have been able to come up with complete performances before, their wins over Tampa Bay and Florida being a few good ones. This team has not had any complete efforts since March ended, and, honestly, the Red Wings had a good chance of defeating the Blackhawks twice if it wasn’t for Malcolm Subban’s shutout.
Is Subban the answer? No, I don’t think so as he would not have had a great outing with the wall the Predators put up in front of the net. He also doesn’t have a great track record with consistency, but Kevin Lankinen hasn’t had great games either.
There are so many question marks on this team that I really don’t know what to think of their chances. They are very capable of playing with the best in the league, but the Nashville Predators have their number. Unless the Blackhawks can take both games against the Predators then win the back to back against the Stars, they could have a chance of making the playoffs. If they lose on Wednesday, the playoffs are gone.
It is too early to give up on the Blackhawks just yet, but if they lose on Wednesday in any fashion, then it might be time.