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king vs oldschool

Game Time: 7:00PM
TV/Radio: NBCSN, CBC (Anglo), RDS (Franco), WGN-AM 720
Nuthin’ But A G Thang: The Royal Half, Jewels From The Crown, Battle of California

There was always the very real possibility that the Hawks’ season could come at the hands of the Kings, but there would have been few that would have thought it would happen so swiftly and emphatically. But regardless of the circumstance, the Hawks now find themselves in a must win game on West Madison this evening to continue playing.

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oldschool at centerpiece-king

Game Time: 8:00PM Central
TV/Radio: NBCSN, TSN (Anglo), RDS (Franco), WGN-AM 720
Help Me Rhonda: The Royal Half, Jewels From The Crown, Battle of California

With a pivotal Game 4 taking place on South Figeuroa later this evening, the question of this series has become can the Hawks generate enough secondary scoring to match that of the Kings, and thus finding a way to stem the tide of the Kings’ lethal second line. Or is Jonathan Toews basically going to have to do all of this by himself?

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wildthings vs oldschool

Game Time: 8:30PM Central
TV/Radio: NBCSN, TSN (Anglo), RDS (Franco), WGN-AM 720
Reintroducing: Hockey Wilderness

For the second time this playoff season, the inevitable playoff matchup between the Blackhawks and the Colorado Avalanche has failed to happen, this time not only because of the Blues’ incompetence, but because of the math finally catching up to the Avs in the form of the Minnesota Wild. The result is now a rematch of last season’s first round few could have predicted happening at all, let alone in the second round.

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Looks like we’re going to have a few days to kill and clean up whatever’s lying around after Sunday’s snuffing of River Scum. So just some points I wanted to get through in the wake.

-I didn’t really have any numbers to back up just how good Duncan Keith was yesterday. I checked them out today. Thanks to Ryan Lambert’s “What We Learned” on Puck Daddy as well for pointing this out. Keith had a 60.6% Corsi-percentage in a game where his team didn’t come close to winning that battle. Even Toews got his head kicked in in terms of possession. Keith’s Relative Corsi Percentage was +27.3%.

Interestingly enough, Keith saw most of his time with Saad, Kruger, and Shaw, and it’s no coincidence that that line had its best game of the series, culminating in the last two goals. Perhaps this was a ploy by Q to get the bottom of the roster going. Or maybe that’s just how it worked out.

Keith also was deployed against Tarasenko and Schwartz. It says they combined for five shots. I certainly don’t remember any of them so I’m guessing they all came on the PP. And look, that line didn’t score, and the Blues are done playing hockey for the season. Easy how that works, no?

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The Hawks got their goalie win last night, and for a team that usually only requires its goalie to do just enough, that’s basically got to be considered a bonus. The Hawks certainly can’t count on Corey Crawford to win the series by himself, and whether we like it or not Ryan Miller probably has one virtuoso performance in him this series as well which the Hawks will have to win anyway unless they plan on being perfect in every other game. Which means there have to be some changes in their game and possibly lineup that they have to figure out. Not that they will, because “Quenneville” is becoming a synonym for “stubborn.” (becoming?)

-I guess it took 85 games, but the moment Michal Handzus was having his name chanted by the UC faithful I guess I finally came to the conclusion that he’s just a necessary evil of sorts. While I still think to a certain extent his fine work on the PK is something of a result of not being quick enough to get into a shooting lane to prevent a shot at all thus resulting in all his diving blocks, I can’t argue with the results on the PK (which is far more important than the power play). I’m sure that’s what Q’s pointing to, and the evidence is that he’s half double-shifting Ben Smith to get him between Hossa and Sharp at times to get more from them. I think we can safely conclude that Q thinks Zus’s PK work is vital, but his work at even-strength is basically something they have to overcome.

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bluestrumpet_jersey vs AltLogo

Game Time: 7:30PM Central
TV/Radio: CSN, CNBC, CBC (Angl0), RDSI (Franco), WGN-AM 720
Moral High Ground From Below Sea Level: SLGT

With the series now turning north and back to the west side tonight, the Hawks find themselves in an unfortunately familiar spot, down two games to an opponent, something that has happened each of the last three playoff years. And this go-around might be the most rancorous yet.

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oldschool at Imo's St. Louis

Game Time: 7:00PM Central
TV/Radio: CSN, NBCSN, CBC (Anglo), RDS2 (Franco), WGN-AM 720
Mung: St. Louis Game Time

When the new playoff format was announced under the plans for realignment, even dating back to the first iteration of the plan nearly two years ago, it seemed like a foregone conclusion that the Hawks and Blues would collide in the playoffs on an annual basis. In fact, creating and amplifying that kind of rivalry was basically the point of the new format. However, it’s unlikely that anyone had this series pegged for the first round, including these two teams themselves.

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While everyone associated with the Hawks was in a tizzy over Jonathan Toews’s injury and mourning the end of this season figuratively, another somewhat important story slipped through the cracks.

We all noticed, and so did the NBCSN broadcast (you think the CSN one would have?), that on Sunday night Michal Handzus basically didn’t play the second half of the game. He was on the bench, but we didn’t know if he was hurt or simply benched.

We now know that he was benched, though we had to pry that out.