Everything Else

Off Day Odds and Ends

After last night’s full slate of activity, the Hawks are now looking to change a few things up on the fly heading into the second half of the season in the wake of some of these injuries.

It appears that neither Marian Hossa nor Andrew Shaw are any worse for wear after their boo-boos last night. Since this is only a one-game trip to Colorado, making the trip would seem to indicate they’ll be in the lineup tomorrow. Shaw caught a subtly vicious elbow from Peter Stastny and didn’t return for the third period, but apparently he’s good to go, though we’ll probably never know the extent to which it actually affected him. Given Shaw’s style of play, the hope that his next face-first collision doesn’t lead to something more serious. As for Hossa, it’s anyone’s guess as to what caused him to be a late scratch last night, because no further information has leaked out. Maybe he strained his shoulder after being asked to pat himself on the repeatedly back by Hawks brass in the pregame ceremony Tuesday night. But for a guy with now a growing history of hits to the head, the vagaries don’t imbue many with confidence in his continued health.

First, that the very professional Nick Cotsonika got this out before the beat writers did should be telling, if not all that surprising. That’s the one upside to all the increased attention, is that the team is now being followed by people who are actually willing to dig a little without fear of having a credential stripped. John Jaeckel, who has iffy opinions but is usually on-point with injury news, said it might be closer to 3-6 with a grade 2 shoulder separation. While neither is ideal, the Hawks have built enough of a cushion that they should be able to get by in Sharp’s extended absence. The hope was that they’d call up someone from Rock Vegas’ top 6 to at least provide a poor-man’s version of Sharp’s scoring punch.

Instead, this happened:

That’s right, he’s back. It’s baffling and somewhat infuriating (especially for Ben Smith, Jeremy Morin, and Jimmy Hayes one would assume), but it’s what’s happening. If I had to guess, the lines going forward would look like this:


Should Gorilla Salad prove to be a bigger liability long-term with The Ghost and The Darkness than he’s already shown to be in limited fashion, one of the aforementioned Piggies might get a trip down I-90. But this experiment apparently needs to be suffered through first.

The other question is who fills Sharp’s spot on the left point of the second power play unit. With Steve Montador healthy, he’d seem like a natural fit with his booming right-handed shot, but Joel Quenneville’s throbbing brain seemed more inclined last year to use him in front on the power play and put Dave Bolland on the point, because THAT makes sense. Realistically though, despite last night’s rough outing, Michael Rozsival probably won’t get anyone killed out there, and he’s already exhibited some sneaky vision that could benefit from some power play time.

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