Well that’s a funny looking strike.
These are the games that really annoy fans like you and us, and not because the Hawks got goalie’d by the Ducks backup. That happens. It’s hockey. This is why it should have been Andy Warhol’s favorite sport, because any jamoke in the gear can have his night. Bernier’s actually been really good the past few appearances, so whatever.
No, what’s annoying is you’ll see a bunch of utterances and belches from players and coaches about how they didn’t get traffic, or didn’t get the greasy goal, or their shot selection is off, because no one can ever admit the guy in the other crease was just better than everyone else. There was nothing wrong about what the Hawks did tonight. They had traffic. They had chances. Another night, they go in. This was not another night. Move on.
Anyway, guess we’d better clean it up.
The Two Obs
-So to the first point of the night. Hammer and Oduya were matched up against Getzlaf’s line and Kesler’s line pretty much equally. Some of that probably had to do with the Getzlaf’s instigator against Wiener Anxiety. Against Getzlaf’s line, everything was fine. Against Kesler’s, with Silfverberg and Cogliano on the wings, it most certainly was not. Check Natural Stat Trick if you don’t believe me. One game, no conclusions to be drawn, just watch the next time they’re asked to deal with a ton of speed on the wings.
-On the plus side, Keith and Seabrook were mostly assigned to Kesler’s line, and were way in the black on things. This is the model. And normally the one goal Hammer and Oduya concede won’t be the only one of the game.
-Speaking of which, it was something of a misplay by Hammer. He got outside the circles to try and deal with Perry, and add to it he didn’t get his angles right, which left Perry all the room in the world to cut to the middle. There were two Ducks on those boards to deal with and perhaps Hammer feared getting beat to the outside, but that’s still less dangerous than the human form of flaccidness getting to move to the circles and tee one up.
-This was one of the few games I didn’t notice Ryan Hartman between the whistles. I understand trying to get Jurco’s greater skill opposite Hossa to maybe make things happen, but give us the Two H’s again, please.
-Andrew Cogliano had seven shots on goal, which should leave Fifth Feather walking funny tomorrow morning.
-On another night, the Hawks end up with a couple power play goals. They were much better with movement tonight than usual, which saw all five skaters occupying every spot at some point. Panarin didn’t anchor himself waiting for one-timers (the Patrick Sharp ploy) and was willing to rotate through the high slot and confuse things. This opened up more space in front, and the Hawks nearly profited.
-Like a Randy Carlyle team, the Ducks went out of their way to “assert” themselves, which of course saw them chasing all night. What’s infuriating is they can claim it worked, but nine out of ten times they’re getting skulled.
-I don’t know what you’ll get out of Jurco with less than 10 minutes, but then again I don’t know what he’s done to earn more than that.
Detroit tomorrow. Chances are you won’t get goalie’d there. Onwards…