You Know I’m A Dreamer: Coyotes 4, Blackhawks 1

Perhaps the best way to draw the silver lining from this game is to realize this was only the second home game where the Hawks did not gain at least one point.  Not a bad way to start. 

Unfortunately, for whatever reason you subscribe to, the Hawks didn’t match the Coyotes’ defensive effort and the result was being on the wrong end of a 4-1 score.  Make no mistake, the Coyotes played as good of a defensive game as the Hawks will probably see all year.  They were incredibly poised in their own end, got in the Hawks way long enough to slow down their forecheck but short enough that they weren’t interfering with them.  Their sticks were always in the passing and shooting lanes and whatever chances the Hawks had, it was of the one and done variety.

On the other side, the Coyotes were able to capitalize on a couple of miscues and that was the story of the game.

So it goes.

–I have never experienced a two-week road trip in the NHL therefore I don’t know how it feels.  However, the excuse making of how difficult the first game back from a road trip is before, during, and after the game bordered on ridiculous tonight.  We all get it; it’s tough to play in, but perhaps if there wasn’t such a negative connotation surrounding the game, the results might be a little better.

–It’s so difficult to gauge this Hawks team.  Mostly because this team is going to look drastically different once the important part of the season kicks in.  (I’m not even going to touch the goaltending because if that doesn’t straighten up, then it’s all irrelevant.)  Right now, the Hawks are far too dependent on their top two lines, aren’t getting nearly enough contribution from the bottom two lines, have three top-notch defensemen (Keith, Leddy, Seabrook) and three bottom pairing defensemen (Montador, Hjalmarsson, and 6th defensemen du-jour).

Something is going to give; most likely on both sides of the puck.  Then we should see more consistency from the team.  Of course, it wouldn’t hurt if Ray Emery or Corey Crawford feel like getting hot anytime soon.  That will also help covering up a lot of their inefficiencies.

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16 Responses to You Know I’m A Dreamer: Coyotes 4, Blackhawks 1

  1. bogiedoc says:

    “Mostly because this team is going to look drastically different once the important part of the season kicks in.” Interesting…..what are you expecting to change??

  2. Cam says:

    “Right now, the Hawks are far too dependent on their top two lines”

    Except those lines aren’t doing much either. Kane has 0 goals and 3 assists over his last 6 games, and one of those was on the meaningless goal against Phoenix. Hossa has 1 goal in his last 9 games. And who are some of the other top-2 line wingers? Brunette? Carcilo? Stalberg? Yeesh. You have Frolik who has talent but is incapable of scoring. His 5% and 3% shooting percentages of last year were supposed to be an aberration but here he is in December at 5.6%, and that includes an empty-netter. Then there are the defensive issues like Keith’s schizophrenia, Hjalmarsson’s lack of improvement, and the mediocrity at 5-7. And I don’t know what’s wrong with Crawford.

    My fear now is that Bowman might panic and move young talent for pieces that won’t be enough.

  3. John says:

    Exactly, their top players are in a bit of a downturn so everything looks bad. They’ll start scoring again and everyone will be dreaming of the Hawks first round opponent. This is what happens during the regular season, there’s ebbs and flows. Say what you want about Stalberg, but he’s currently on pace for 20 goals and 50 points. That’s not too shabby.

  4. rich Lindbloom says:

    ALTHOUGH are top lines are struggling, I think Hossa and Kane had 7 shots vs. the Kings. And Hossa might have had 7 before.

    I agree with John’s assessment of the coyote defensive effort last night – indefatigable. It looked like a bobby Knight coached team out there. They made the Hawks down low cycle look like a stationary bike. and Smith handles the puck behind his net as well as anyone I’ve seen this season.

    the first goal, although Corey seemed to have stopped it initially was largely do to a terrible line change. By the time the puck was shot- I think the Hawks still only had three men on the ice.

    weird game – we couldn’t seem to buy a square inch of open ice, and it looked like the Yotes could have pitched a tent a few times in our zone.

    and so it goes, and so it goes and so it goes and so it goes – but where it’s going, no one knows. – nick Lowe

    Hopefully we realize the Islanders will attempt to bring their A-game in on friday. Last night’s effort will have us heading into a two game losing streak when we meat the resurgent Blues. Although, I’m thinking the horseshoe is about to fall out odf their pocket pretty soon – they’re good but 8-1-2 in the last 11.

  5. Steve says:

    We can talk all we want about adding another forward or a defenseman but, as you alluded, the proverbial elephant in the room has been goaltending which is, to say the least, completely in the toilet right now and, unlike in previous seasons we don’t have a decent plan B to go to.

    With each subsequent game it’s becoming more and more apparent that the Hawks got lucky with Crawford last season and drastically overvalued him.

  6. JB says:

    Have they won a “trap game” in the last 2 years? The Islanders game is another “trap game”… Constantly losing “trap games” shows a lack of heart and killer instinct. There is some heart on this team but not enough right now.

  7. Otter says:

    I haven’t watched the Hawks nearly as much this year as I have the previous three years, but a few things…
    –What happened to Hjalmarsson? This is not the guy I watched from 2008-2010.
    –Bickell needs to realize he’s 6-4, 220
    –I have no clue if the Hawks put out feelers to see what they’d get in return for Sharp, but I’d do have to wonder… I’m not a fan of that contract
    –Crawford seems like a total mess right now, Emery won’t be the answer long term. What’s the story with the kid they got from FLA?
    –Maybe I only watch is bad games, but I’m not a fan of Leddy yet
    –Frolik is a youknowwhat-tease

    And I agree, I’m not sure how good this team is. It’s obviously good and should make the playoffs with ease. In fact, they’ll probably be a top 3, probably top 2, seed unless the goal tending continues to totally stink.

    But from there? I’m with John… no clue and probably shouldn’t worry about it.

  8. BobbyJet says:

    No matter that the team barely laid a glove on the opposition, let them dictate the game, and that we lost virtually every board battle as well as showed no heart whatsoever. And on Chicago ice.

    Nope, doesn’t matter, I think I’ll join the crowd and bury my head in the sand as well, by calling last night’s game just another anomaly and part of the ebb and flow of a too long regular season.
    (sarcasm intended)

  9. eternal fields says:

    Really doesn’t matter that it was a “trap game.”
    When all is said and done, that’s a loser’s excuse.
    Do season-ticket-holder’s get to “opt out” of trap games?
    If no, then let’s move on and leave the excuses behind.

    There’s losing, which happens all the time in the NHL.
    And then there’s losing the way they lost last night.
    They were hanging on for dear life in the third period.
    At one point, it was 5-0.
    I suppose it just wasn’t their night (slight return).

  10. John says:

    Nevermind the 14 wins the Hawks have accumulated thus far. This team is hot garbage, they don’t hit enough, they don’t score enough, and they don’t have the proper amount of heart or will to win or killer instinct or whatever else make-believe thing fans hold on to. This team is obviously destined to never change and will be lucky to win another game the rest of the year.
    (sarcasm not intended)

  11. eternal fields says:

    John, I’m new here, so I’m not sure I understand the sarcasm (or lack thereof).
    I “get” that it’s one loss. I’ve long preached sobriety during troubling times elsewhere on the internet, so I’m not soiling my trousers out on some ledge.

    I am, however, troubled somewhat by this thing that’s happened twice in the last 10 days or so . . . the Hawks not having an answer for another team which is just absolutely having their way with them. It did get ugly last night in the third. Should have been a five-goal lead . . . that is cause for concern, no?

  12. John says:

    My reply was not directed at you. They’re an inconsistent team and there’s a 100% chance they’re going to use the $5M+ in cap space to make themselves more consistent. Getting hot and bothered by the bad games while ignoring the good ones (which there have been more of by the way) is not being rational.

  13. Nick J says:

    It just appears to me when they lose, they really get their asses handed to them. There hasn’t been a really “good” loss if you know what I mean. Calgary and Edmonton were struggling teams and they spanked us to end losing streaks. The Ducks were 20 minutes away from a win, until the Captain went out and murdered people. 50 seconds away from our 4th shutout loss of the year last night as well and Mike Smith seems to have our number along with Niemi. This team has been hard to figure out and I don’t know what to expect when tuning in anymore. I’m also very frightened of what may happen in St Louis this Saturday.

  14. dominator says:

    If the game against San Jose wasn’t a ‘good’ loss then I don’t know what you mean. They outplayed the Sharks and if it wasn’t for Nemo would have won.

    Last night was hot garbage on the ice but people out there calling for Q to get fired need to get a grip.

  15. feyer says:

    It looks like the Bobby Ryan trade will be made this week. Lots of interest, but the hawks aren’t in the running.

  16. Patrick says:

    Crawford this year reminds me of Howard last year. I think he’ll end up being alright. Closer to the playoffs, I say bring Huet back (now ducks for cover).

    Other than that, I say move Olesz and OD (or even better, Scott) for Komisarek – yea, I know he’s expensive and has two more years after this year, but he’s a crease clearer and you can probably get him out of Toronto for really cheap (other than the cap hit – now running from the pitchforks). Pick up a forward like Matt Moulson from the going-nowhere-fast Islanders closer to the deadline for prospects.

    Lastly – loved Walking Dead the other night – what a kick in the nuts, didn’t see that coming. Always appreciate the insights, John…

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