Tag Archives: joel quenneville

Hawks Keep Rolling

18 Feb

Yes it got a little frantic at the end of the game but the Hawks held on to win the game and remain unbeaten in regulation.

The Blackhawks (12-0-3) matched the 1984-85 Edmonton Oilers for the league’s second-longest streak, and are one away from the tying the mark set by Anaheim in 2006-07.

Who do they play next? The much hated Vancouver Canucks. What a time for those jerk-stores to come to town. Could it get any better then beating them? Of course I’m sure they are saying something similar about being the team to beat the Hawks and keep them from making history. Should be a fun one.

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The Hawks got a good start and an early lead on the defending Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings. Up 3-0 and that was enough. Nice to see Sharp get a goal. He went nearly a month between tallies. He was still productive and was racking up the assists but goal scorers like to get goals. Imagine if that guy heats up.

Ray Emery was solid all night. Looking like a legit number 1 goalie instead of a number 2 or a guy on his last legs….or last hip in his case.

The 2 goals that the Kings scored were power play goals that Ray Emery was screened on. Full marks to the Kings. The earned those goals and grabbed momentum off of them. Hey Blackhawks did you hear that? The Kings scored power play goals by having a man in front screening the goalie. It’s not rocket science guys.

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”What’s important to us is getting home-ice advantage, making the playoffs,” Toews said. ”Those are our goals. Once you get there, the real season starts. When you get to that point, no one really cares or remembers those streaks at the start of the season.”

”I thought we had a great first 40 minutes and they got some momentum off their power-play goal early in the third,” Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said. ”They had a great third period. We had 40, they had a great 20, and the clock ran out, which was nice.”

”We probably didn’t play well enough to win this game,” Richards said. ”The slow start kind of cost us. We gave them a lot in the first period with penalties and some turnovers and they scored some goals, which put us behind the 8-ball pretty quick.”

Before the game, Quenneville said Crawford was ”progressing” and is day-to-day. When asked if Crawford’s condition might be long-term, Quenneville replied, ”I don’t foresee that yet.” Crawford – who has a 7-0-3 record, 1.65 goals-against average and .935 save percentage – has not skated since sustaining his injury, apparently in a 3-2 shootout loss to Anaheim last Tuesday. It’s alleged that Bobby Ryan injured Crawford when he ran into him in that game. With no penalty called for some weird reason.

TTS

Revenge is Sweet

8 Feb

Patrick Kane had another big night and the Chicago Blackhawks won again.

The fact that they exacted a bit of revenge on Raffi Torres and routed the Phoenix team that ousted them from last season’s playoffs only made it sweeter.

Kane had two goals and an assist, and the Blackhawks remained the only NHL team without a loss in regulation this season by beating the Coyotes 6-2 Thursday night.

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What could make it better? How about seeing Mike “give the academy award to” Smith head to the bench. Yeah sit down on the bench and think about how you suck Smith. Stupid crybaby. But hey at least he didn’t throw a tantrum this time like he has so many times before. Smith has now given up 12 goals in 2 games this year to the Blackhawks. In last years playoffs Smith gave up 12 goals in 6 games. Don’t you just love that? I know I sure do.

Did somebody fight Raffi Shithead Tores? Check, nice job Mayers. Patrick Kane said after the first period that the fight, which happened right in front of the hawks bench, gave the whole team chills. Got them really pumped up. It showed as the Hawks left the first period up 4-0.

How sweet.

Have you ever seen a Dave Tippett coached team lose their cool like this? Not when he was with Dallas, not with the Coyotes. They took stupid penalty after stupid penalty. Giving the Hawks two 5 on 3’s in the first. The Hawks made them pay both times for that. The Hawks are rolling right now and brimming with confidence. Do you really think it’s a good strategy to give them two 5 on 3’s? No it’s not.

Sorry former Winnipeg Jets, Current Phoenix Coyotes, future Quebec Nordiques.

”We feel good right now,” coach Joel Quenneville said. ”We’ve been consistent in our games. We got a lot of contributions from a lot of guys. It seems like the chemistry and the mood of the room is as good as you can get, and it’s reflected in our play.”

”A good fight there,” said Patrick Sharp, who had three assists. ”It definitely fired us up and got us going.”

”When you give up five power-play opportunities, you give up one soft goal, two 5-on-3 goals and one where we had nobody willing to cover anybody anywhere close,” coach Dave Tippett said, ”and you put them up by a score like that, it makes it kind of an uphill battle the rest of the night.”

Cheered on by their usual boisterous fans in Phoenix, the Blackhawks outshot the Coyotes 17-4 in the first period. It almost looked like a Hawks home game.

”I hope that’s a blip on the radar screen,” Tippett said, ”because there’s a lot of stuff right there that is not going to be happening on our team.”

NOTES: Chicago wraps up its season-high six-game road trip Sunday in Nashville. … Kane is 13 short of 400 career points. … Phoenix’s Rostislav Klesla missed his ninth straight game with a lower-body injury. … Kane entered third in the NHL in points (15). … Smith has allowed 12 goals against Chicago and eight against every other team he’s faced.

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TTS

Hawks beat Sharks and tonight they get to visit Sh**head Raffi Torres

7 Feb

What a game Tuesday night. Two of the best defensive teams in the league had a run and gun shoot out in the first period. Both teams scored 3 goals in the first 20 minutes. After that, both teams buckled down and the free for all calmed down.

Give Joel Quenneville credit. I would have yanked Crawford. He didn’t. He called Time out. The Sharks actually called their time out too with both teams having no time outs after the first period. But that third goal Crawford let in was typical. You know the kind you can’t let in. The ones you have to stop. But after that goal when the score was 3-2 TTS favorite Andrew Shaw scored 8 seconds later to tie the game. Plus, too Crawfords credit he did settle down and didn’t let in any more goals.

Congrats to Saad for getting his first NHL goal. Well deserved as the kid has been playing outstanding but wasn’t getting rewarded for his efforts. That goal was nice to see.

In the second period Toews and Kane put on a show. It was just those 2 and 4 sharks in the zone when Toews stole the puck and fed it to Kane to bang in a one timer game winning goal. Kane would later add an empty net. It was good SHarks players too. Jumbo Joe was on the ice so was Havlat. I don’t remember the D men but it was guys that should never allow something like that. 4 players against 2 and you let the 2 steal the puck from you and score. Score what turned out to be the game winning goal? You go to the bench and feel shame.

Now was this game a sign? Maybe. But the schedule could have had something to do with it too. The Sharks had played 3 games in 4 nights and had just lost a tough game to Anaheim the night before. At the same time, the Hawks had the same thing and came away with a victory against the Flames a few days ago so….is it an excuse? I read online that the Sharks fans want to blame this on the refs. Saying that was an unfair penalty for the hit on Mayers. Was it the worst hit in the history of the NHL? No. Did he leave his feet? Yeah a little bit. That’s what did it. It today’s sports world head shots will not have any wiggle room. You hit a guy in the head and leave your feet in the process will get you big penalty minutes. The NFL is leading the way and quite frankly…they should. Why do we have to tolerate career ending injuries and hits that threaten a persons quality of life. We all love big hits but we can’t have guys leaving their feet for a hit. Even if it’s just a couple inches off the ice. That doesn’t matter. What matters is that when you leave the ice for a hit, even just a couple inches, it makes a devastating head shot.

Speaking of leaving your feet for devastating head shots.

The Blackhawks get to visit the Phoenix Coyotes tonight. Guess who is back from his suspension for a dirty head shot. That’s right, the leagues biggest shit head, Raffi Torres. Go F*** yourself Raffi.

The Hawks played in Phoenix earlier this year, the second game of the season as a matter of fact. The Hawks beat them soundly. Now there is nothing more that Hawks fans want to see other then some justice. While I never can sponsor that type of activity, I maybe wouldn’t mind it against a serial repeating offender like Shithead. I mean Torres. This guy won’t learn. Tigers can’t change their stripes and Assholes cant stop being assholes. Just a fact of life. The best revenge for the Hawks would be to play their game and get the 2 points. It’s a short season and both teams need it. The Coyotes need the 2 points more then the Hawks do at this time of year so that would be sweet revenge. Plus the Hawks are rolling right now. Why spoil that by getting off your game just looking for revenge? Just play and win baby. Let that fuckface play for a losing team. He can stay at home and watch the Blackhawks in the playoffs.

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Chicago Blackhawks Ice Crew Girls

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TTS

Blackhawks are 4-0 to start the season!

25 Jan

Well this is pretty fantastic.

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What’s great is that the Hawks are getting strong play from their best players. You need that if you want to make some noise. Getting off to a good start is key in a short sprint of a season like we have here.

If you haven’t seen the highlights, make sure to catch the OT winner. Kane’s no look behind the back – basketball type- pass was incredible. He totally froze Lehtonen who could not get over to stop Hossa’s one timer blast. Great points if you have Hossa on your fantasy hockey team. Power play game winning goal. Hossa is on fire with 5 goals already. He is a horse of a man. No sigs of last seasons crushing concussion from Piece of Shit Raffi Torres. Keep sitting on that bench Raffi. Dick.

”First really big test coming from behind and I think we didn’t quit,” Hossa said. ”Huge goal by Toews at the end kept us in the game.”

The Blackhawks, who matched the franchise’s best start set during the 1972-73 season, overcame a 2-0 second-period deficit. Corey Crawford made 21 saves and stopped Ryan Garbutt on a penalty shot.

”We just kept sticking to the same play, kept going, and our guys did a great job not getting frustrated,” Crawford said. ”All the missed opportunities or big saves sometimes gets to you. But tonight was great. We got some big goals and an amazing play by Kaner at the end there.”

”We’ll talk about that one for a long time, like he had eyes behind his head,” Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said of Kane’s pass. ”He saw Hoss and everybody thought it was on the left side, including me, and then he pulls that off and Hoss doesn’t waste it and buries it. It was a special ending.”

Chicago’s high-powered offense, which racked up 14 goals in the previous three games, needed the man-advantage to score all three Thursday night.

Part of that was due to an outstanding performance by Lehtonen, who made 38 saves after coming within 3.4 seconds of a 39-save shutout Tuesday in a 2-1 win at Detroit.

”If Kari isn’t there, there is no game tonight,” Dallas defenseman Stephane Robidas said. ”There’s no chance we get a point. We just got lucky that we hung in there for that long. We’ve just got to tighten up defensively. You can’t play like that all the time.”

Dallas coach Glen Gulutzan was not happy with the performance of his team, which was outshot 41-23 and fell to 2-1-1.

”Lost battles and turnovers,” Gulutzan said. ”If you lose one-on-one battles all night, and if you turn the puck over all night, then you’re going to be on the wrong end of things, and that’s what we did.”

With Eric Nystrom in the penalty box for boarding, Toews tied it at 2 with 5:53 left in regulation on a wrist shot from the left circle that beat Lehtonen over the blocker.

The Stars had a prime opportunity to win when Niklas Hjalmarsson’s tripping penalty with 1:18 left in regulation gave them a chance to end it on the power play. But even though the man-advantage carried over into overtime, they were unable to capitalize.

Ray Whitney’s second goal of the season midway through the second period gave Dallas a 2-0 lead, but the Stars continued to get into penalty trouble, allowing three goals on their last four trips to the box.

”We didn’t change too much of our approach,” Quenneville said. ”We didn’t get away from our game, just tried to get on the offensive side of things, drew some penalties, and the power play cashed in. It was a real solid game for us.”

Loui Eriksson put the Stars up 1-0 with a short-handed goal on a spectacular effort with 1.4 seconds remaining in the first period. He fought his way around defenseman Brent Seabrook at the Chicago blue line and fired a wrist shot that Crawford initially appeared to stop, but the puck came loose and slid just over the goal line.

Garbutt was awarded his first career penalty shot early in the second when he was pulled down from behind by Seabrook on a breakaway, but Crawford made a glove save on his backhand attempt.

Following a turnover by Michal Rozsival, Whitney found himself alone in front and his point-blank backhander over Crawford’s shoulder gave Dallas a two-goal lead at 10:41.

The Blackhawks finally solved Lehtonen on a power play at 15:57 when Sharp attempted a pass through the crease that was inadvertently deflected in by Dallas defender Trevor Daley.

”To us, it was almost fun to watch how good he was playing,” Kane said of Lehtonen. ”Just making acrobatic save after acrobatic save.”

Dallas forward Jaromir Jagr, who had two goals and two assists on opening night but has been held off the scoresheet since, left with an undisclosed injury late in the third period.

”I don’t think it’s anything big, but I haven’t spoken to our training staff,” Gulutzan said.

NOTES: During the game, the Stars announced that they signed restricted free agent center Jamie Benn to a five-year contract worth $26.25 million. … The last time the Blackhawks opened the season with at least three straight victories was back in 1972-73, when Hall of Famers Tony Esposito and Stan Mikita led them to a 4-0 start en route to the Stanley Cup final. … Dallas has allowed just one goal during 5-on-5 play through its first four games.

Ratings Records and Hawks off to 3-0 Start!

24 Jan

Ratings across the United States and Canada have shown record setting ratings for NHL games. So much for the fan backlash from the lockout.

CBC in Canada had record ratings for Saturday night. St Louis reported it’s higher ever ratings for a blues game which was a Tuesday night Shootout thriller against the Nashville Predators. Here in Chicago, the story is the same. From the Chicago Tribune:

CSN delivered its highest Hawks regular-season game rating for its coverage of Tuesday night’s home opener against the Blues. The 5.40 household rating means approximately 188,169 households tuned in for the entire game and eclipsed the previous mark of 4.35 set March 5, 2010 against the Canucks.

Also, NBC’s coverage of the NHL on Saturday produced the league’s most-watched regular-season broadcast in 14 years, excluding Winter Classics, according to The Nielsen Company.

Regional coverage of the Hawks taking on the Kings and also the Penguins facing the Flyers was watched by 2.77 million viewers (1.6 household rating).

Hawks off to a great start.

Hard to believe but the Blackhawks are off to their best start since 1972-1973 season. Can you believe that the Hawks have not had a 3-0-0 start in the last 40 years? Not even the 2010 cup winning team did that! Crazy eh?

The Hawks themselves have said their is a feel to this team that’s similar to the cup winning team. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves but i’m pretty happy with what I’ve seen. Not that there aren’t things that can improve. Plus I expect LA and Phoenix to have a better showing the next time we see them. Especially from their goaltenders who both gave up a couple of week ones. However beating the blues was impressive. The Blues smoked the Red Wings 6-0 the first game of the season and then won a shootout against tough divisional rival the Predators.

From the Hawks themselves:

“It’s a good start but you can’t think about it too much,” winger Patrick Kane said. “One of the things about this season is you’re playing so many games in a short amount of time so it’s almost like you win one, ‘all right, think about the next one.’ If you keep doing that you’re going to have a good recipe for success.”

“It was a lot of tough opponents right out of the gate, but I liked the focus of our team,” coach Joel Quenneville said. “We’re happy, but let’s keep trying to get better.”

Added defenseman Duncan Keith: “It’s definitely a good feeling but we know it’s three games and it’s all about what have you done for me lately.”

Tonight, the Hawks face the Dallas Stars who have been a bit of a surprise so far in the early season.

TV/radio: 7:30 p.m. Thursday; CSN, WGN-AM 720.

Series: First meeting.

Last meeting: Hawks won 4-1 March 16, 2012 in Dallas.

Probable goaltenders: Hawks, Corey Crawford, 2-0-0, 2.00 goals-against average; Stars, Kari Lehtonen, 2-0-0, 2.00.

Team comparison

Averages per game (NHL rank)
HAWKS (3-0-0) CATEGORY STARS(2-1-0) 4.67 (3) Goals for 2.00 (20) 2.67 (17) Goals against 1.67 (7) 23.1 (17) Power-play pct. 20.0 (19) 90.0 (3) Penalty-kill pct. 83.3 (11)

The Hawks will look to continue their strong play on the road after opening the season with victories in Los Angeles and Phoenix. Marian Hossa (four goals, one assist) and Patrick Kane (two goals, three assists) have come out of the gate strong to lead the Hawks’ high-powered offense. The Stars are led in scoring by 40-year-old Jaromir Jagr, who has two goals and two assists. Lehtonen has stopped 36 of 40 shots over his two starts.

Blackhawks hire Kings’ Kompon as assistant

17 Jul

The Chicago Blackhawks hired the Los Angeles Kings’ Jamie Kompon as an assistant coach on Tuesday.

The 45-year-old Kompon will be reunited with Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville and assistant Mike Kitchen, who worked with Kompon with the St. Louis Blues. Kompon was a video coach and later an assistant coach with the Blues from 1997-2006.

Kompon spent the past six seasons with the Stanley Cup champion Kings as an assistant coach.

“We are excited to add Jamie as assistant coach and certainly welcome the Stanley Cup pedigree he brings,” Blackhawks vice president and general manager Stan Bowman said in a statement. “He has over 15 years of NHL coaching experience and some obvious familiarity with our staff, having worked under Joel and Mike in St. Louis, which will help our staff and players with the transition.”

The 1999-2000 Blues, with Quenneville, Kitchen and Kompon on staff, set a franchise-record 113 points and captured the Presidents’ Trophy for the NHL’s best record.

“Jamie will bring us all the great qualities you look for in a coach, most notably his work ethic and a winning resume,” Quenneville said. “We have a great working relationship, and I am confident he will be a great fit with us here in Chicago.”

Kompon replaces Mike Haviland, who was fired after the season.

This is a big season for Hawks management.  Quenneville finally has his own coaching staff since coming aboard.  This was important for Joel because don’t forget that Bergevin (a Quenneville ally) moved to Montreal this summer to be GM.  Then the Bowman’s brought in their own guy to replace him, Pierre Gauthier as Director of Player Personnel.  That meant one more on the Bowman side, so they had to let Coach Q get a guy in this off ice battle ground.  With the Bowman’s not doing anything to change the roster from the first round and out team of the last two years, they are effectively saying to Q that this is not a personal issue, it’s a coaching issue.  Joel can’t complain about the coaching staff anymore, he’s got his guys in there now.  So if things don’t go well for the Hawks one of them has to go:  Quenneville or Bowman.  Sounds like high school politics doesn’t it?

TTS

Misc Blackhawks news, notes and thoughts

25 Apr

Chicago Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman, seen here

Thinks Marion Hossa will be just fine with a full recovery in time for next season.

“We’ve had a lot of similar type injuries with players in the past,” Bowman said Wednesday. “It’s too hard to predict the recovery time on these things. There is no reason to think he’s any different than any other player that has that type of injury. We’re very optimistic that he’s going to be back.”

“We don’t approach that any differently than a different injury,” Bowman said. “We’re here in April and training camp doesn’t open until September. That’s a lot of time to be rested and prepared and training in the offseason.”

Bowman also concedes that the goaltending for the Blackhawks was not good enough.

“Our goaltending in general was not our strength,” Bowman said on Wednesday. “I don’t think it’s fair to lay the blame on one player. You win as a team, you lose as a team. I think we need to be stronger defensively and that includes our team commitment to defense, not simply the goaltending and not simply the defensemen.”

As far as looking for help on the free agent market:

“You don’t rule anything in or out,” he said. “We’re always trying to improve our team.”

Bowman also indicated that there would be no changes to the hawks “core” players.

Coach Joel Quenneville seems more open to some changes.

“You have a nice core here, a nice group of guys here,” he said after Bowman spoke to the media. “They give you a chance every year to win a championship. Whether it’s a tweak or you want to do more than that, but that’s something good to talk about.”

Here is where things get interesting.  Despite the fact that most hockey experts, the majority of Hawks fans and general NHL fans all agree that the Hawks need a 2nd line center…..Bowman doesn’t.  He seems to think that # 88 is a great fit.

“Our team’s best record, and it coincided with Patrick’s best performance, was when he was in the middle,” Bowman explained. “Patrick carried our team the last month or five weeks of the season. He kind of put us on his back and got us into the playoffs. He stepped up and was our No.1 center for all those weeks. … I think the notion that he can’t play center or isn’t good at center has been dispelled. Not only did our team play well when he was in the middle, he played well. He had his most productive time when he was there.”

Remember when he would talk about Patrick Sharp that way?  He would remind all of us that they won the cup with Sharp as a number 2 center.  Of course that was when our team was so deep it didn’t really matter.  We’re not that team anymore and now for some reason Kane has become the new Sharp.

When asked if he would look to the free agent market for a center Bowman said

“Kane in the middle is certainly better than any other center that’s available.”

TTS will explore free agents that are available in a later post.

What about the relationship between GM and Head Coach?  Plenty of eyebrows were raised when director of pro personnel Barry Smith was added to help the coaching staff for a while.  He was on the ice helping run drills.  Jobs normally done by the coaching staff.  He ran a lot of special teams drills too, an area that plagued the Hawks all season.  Barry used to be Scotty Bowman’s right hand man during his coaching days.

“We have great communication back and forth,” Bowman said. “We see things similarly in terms of things that need improvement. … Our relationship wasn’t strained at all. … Obviously there was a challenge when we had the long losing streak — if anything we came together as a unit.”

Coaching changes are up to Quenneville according to Bowman.  But he doesn’t sound happy concerning the special teams.

“The results speak for themselves,”  “They were a huge disappointment this year. It’s unacceptable to have the caliber of players we have and not have it work. Ultimately we have to improve that.”

They sure do.  How can that “core” be so poor at the power play?  If the Hawks were better than 1-19 in the first round against Phoenix then they would probably be playing in Nashville in round 2.

Expect Duncan Keith to play in the World Championships for Team Canada this spring.

“I’m really excited to go there and play,” Keith said. “I would have liked to have gone last year.”

I’m hoping that Bowman is using a poker face by not saying more about obtaining help for the goalie and center positions.  It wouldn’t be prudent to come out and say yeah we need them bad.  As a buyer, that would put him at a disadvantage.  However, he said Sharp was fine at center and that he wouldn’t get one and he didn’t.  He just put a different Patrick in the slot.  How many more Patrick’s are on this team to try at center?  Aren’t they running out of them?

Question:  How many Patrick’s does it take to fill in the 2nd line center slot for the Blackhawks?  If you know, let me know.

Back with more soon.

TTS

PS, quotes are from ESPN