Well, you can’t say they didn’t have it coming. All night long the Kings played with the Hawks like a cat plays with…I hate cats what do they play with? Rodent carcasses? The dead bodies of their owners?
If you asked me to sum up that game in four words it’d be “Kero on Toews’ wing” which is a real thing that happened after Seabrook’s gaffe allowed the Kings to tie the game late in the third.
It’s very late so let’s bulletize this bad boy before I fall face down on my keyboard which is filthy.
-What hurts here is the Blackhawks were fourteen minutes away from heading home with a 4-1-1 record on this latest iteration of the circus trip. That’s honestly hard to believe given the way the trip started in western Canada.
-Still, that result felt somewhat deserved when you’ve got the amount of discombobulation in the forward groupings like Chicago does right now. I can’t tell who’s going to be in or out in any given game and forget about trying to surmise a reason for it.
-It seemed like Quenneville tried to spread Toews out between the Kopitar line and the Carter line. The problem with that is obvious: Toews can battle the best of centers to a standstill at worst but that means others have to pick up the scoring. More on this in a minute. Somehow Toews managed to carry the best possession numbers on the team. So on the bright side he may be really turning the corner.
-On the other side of the roster, Teravainen continues to be blatantly under utilized. Tanner Kero and Brandon Mashinter might as well be wearing PLACE HOLDER on the backs of their jerseys instead of their names. While in the past I might have thrown a fit – I’m willing to bet neither Kero or Mashinter will be a factor come spring. It’s cold comfort now but it’s all I can do.
-The Blackhawks might have escaped with two points tonight if Brent Seabrook didn’t whiff on a pass attempt in front of Scott Darling while Anze Kopitar was waiting right nearby. Unfortunate event that Seabrook almost atoned for in overtime – but Jon Quick made a crazy blocker save to keep the game alive for LA. What can you say there except shit happens?
-I got a 2014 feeling watching this game. The Blackhawks are missing a competent third line to deal with the Kings right now and it’s either going to have to emerge as a result of the constant tinkering from Quenneville, or Bowman’s going to have to get creative. Considering we already know he’s busy trying to find another defenseman, I’m sure he’s having conversation.
-The Hawks failed to convert on at least three clear cut chances tonight. If that’s just puck luck, fine. Still – how often do you see a team with so few shots on goal and such paltry possession numbers have so many extremely good chances? And miss all of them?
-While the post-mortem on this trip will be 8 points from 12, I still don’t feel remotely comfortable with the level of play. At some point we all want to see one of those scorched earth runs where they rattle off nine of ten. The sooner the better because the playoff picture is a quagmire. I don’t much care if they end up loitering in one of the wild card spots while the Blues run away and win another regular season championship – but I’d prefer to avoid a repeat of 2012.
-Thanks to the result, it’ll be a footnote that Patrick Kane broke his record today with another two points. I almost forgot to mention it. His Fuck You Everyone season rolls on. To be honest, this just seems like trivia for years down the road when Jack Eichel breaks this thing in 2027 because the nets are the size of Alaska and Kane is off in Margaritaville staring wistfully at a picture of himself back when he had hair.