Broken Record: Hawks 2, Sharks 1
One way or the other, I'm glad that's over. Yes, it's great that the Hawks have broken the record for consecutive points earned in games to start the season, but do we really care? I mean, other than the fact that the Hawks have established themselves Stanley Cup contenders already, the record itself doesn't get me that excited. I mean, who can get that hyped up over breaking a mark set by the Anaheim Ducks?
Irregardless (HI MORPH), it's done. The Hawks actually have a very good chance of running this thing out a couple of more games, as their next two are against the Columbus Sad Sacks and the Edmonton Oilers, who can't score to save their lives despite all their talented forwards. These games would seem to be a nice way to ease Corey Crawford back into the lineup and hopefully getting him back up to game speed. Then we can see how he does against actual NHL teams.
Health - Seabrook and Hossa back in the lineup, with Corey Crawford dressed as Emery's backup. Good to have everyone back.
Ray Emery - Emery has been absolutely crucial to the Blackhawks fast start. Razor has stepped up during Corey Crawford's injury and the Hawks haven't missed a beat. While the team is playing extremely well in front of him, Emery hasn't just been along for the ride by any means.
Brandon Saad - Dropped off the top line for in favor of Dan "Gorilla Salad" Carcillo during the second period, Saad responded by scoring the game winning goal (short-handed, no less) and had rejoined his mates Toews and Hossa by the 3rd period.
The Swedish Meatballs - How good have Johnny Oduya and Nik Hjalmarsson been this year? Good enough that Joel Quenneville trusted the pair to play 20 minutes in a 1 goal game. In fact, let's hear it for depth in general, as the Hawks 3rd pairing of Rozsival and Leddy got 16 minutes, keeping Keith and Seabrook down to a manageable 22.
Gorilla Salad on the first line - Look, I'm actually glad to have Carcillo back. When he plays under control, he's actually a useful player on the 4th line. But let's not get carried away, in the past few years the rumors of Carcillo having "skill" have been greatly exaggerated. Leave Brandon Saad with Hossa and Toews please.
Tommy Wingels - I'm sorry but Tommy Wingels sounds like the name of a character on a terrible children's television program.
Antti Niemi - I'm giving him half a bad here, because that Stalberg goal was so bad that Stalberg scored it. But it's also got to be tough on a goalie when you know going in to the game that if you give up 1 goal in regulation you'll need to take it to a shootout to have any hope of picking up 2 points.
The Sharks - Quick, which NHL team has less cap space than the Blackhawks, no secondary scorers, a defensive corps that appears in the dictionary next to the word "meh" and just smashed into a closed championship window like a sparrow on Windex day?
Up Next - the Hawks play the Blue Jackets on Sunday, and we'll be recapping the game on that night's Puckcast, because we realized we can get away with that now.