Evil Things - Blackhawks 3, Blues 3 (OTL)
Tonight the Blackhawks welcomed the new look St. Louis Blues into town and the Pigpen-like cloud that followed them all the way up I-55 in what I presume was some kind of primitive bus fashioned out of used diapers. The Blues have been an utter disappointment this year despite being picked by almost every major hockey outlet to win the West. Can they still? Sure. That would require a complete 180 from the horrific goaltending they’ve received this year from the leaky triumvirate of Jaro Halak (injured), Brian Elliott(terrible), and Jake Allen (JAY GALLON).
The Blackhawks could all but end the race for the division title with a win tonight and push St. Louis further away from the playoffs and closer to, well I’d say an early tee time, but the Blues don’t seem like golfers. Let's hatecap.
- Jonathan Toews was good. Very good. He was the best player on the ice with Marian Hossa barely within spitting distance. He had a couple of moves that left Jabe O'Meester in another dimension.
- Surprised to say that Michal Handzus made a nice debut tonight. He won 10 of 14 draws and generally did a nice job driving possession with Marcus Kruger. In fact, the Blues are an excellent possession team and the Hawks won that battle rather handily. He also came out to take a draw in overtime and then got off the ice which puts him the John Madden category which means good and happy thoughts.
- Brandon Saad is pretty much everyone's favorite Man Child at this point. The kid is just great. He's becoming automatic for this section of every recap.
- Viktor Stalberg earned his game tying goal after getting his stitches clawed at all night long by bloodthirsty heathens in white. More on this later.
- Corey Crawford had another underwhelming performance. One could make the argument that he should have stopped all three St. Louis goals. When the Hawks outshoot a team 36-22 there's really one guy to look at. That said he's going to have to play better because this team isn't rolling into the playoffs with EXTREMELY VOLATILE INSANE MAN Ray Emery as their #1. More on him in a bit.
- Dave Bolland clearly plays hockey in another land where he can just get by doing the bare minimum hoping not to get noticed. He's succeeding in that unless you count the lazy slash on Tarasenko that sent him to the box. Is he going to do his usual wake up routine in time for the postseason? This is getting old.
- Bouwmeester is Dutch for "is the receipt in the bag or...?"
- Adam Cracknell? The upside here is that St. Louis fans' new folk hero's jersey can be easily modified once he gets waived by ripping off the "NELL".
- The third line was mostly awful tonight. The bloom is off that rose.
- In the second period, Barret Jackman crashed into the boards near Viktor Stalberg who then got pummelled by Roman Polak before the refs broke it up. Yep, the escaped Russian circus bear repeatedly face-punched the guy with 60 stitches and a face shield while he wasn’t defending himself simply for being in the vicinity of Jackman’s self-propelled colliision into the boards. Backman then headed to the bench with the help of a trainer who was decked out in a hazmat suit. However, before Jackman could sit down and borrow the team’s legendary iPad to watch some videos from the "How To Skate" series he heard someone chirping. Turns out it was known crazy person Ray Emery who will let you punch him in the face while he laughs like the Joker poisoning an entire studio audience. At one point Emery motioned with his thumb to Jackman to meet him in the tunnel which I assume gave Jackman flashbacks to his days of picking up hitchhikers and having sex with their freshly murdered bodies.
- Ryan Reaves was born and raised in a dumpster behind the Purina building.
- Patrik Berglund sported a lovely -15 Corsi rating tonight.
The score and outcome are a little misleading. The Blackhawks generally played quite well as these numbers attest to. Crawford needs to be better, period. That kind of effort from the rest of the team is generally going to result in two points more nights than not. So for anyone looking to storm the castle please hold off.
Lots of neckless hockey coming up with Nashville twice in the coming days. So that should be super boring. Go Hawks.