Back to the Grind

The Hawks returned to the ice on Tuesday after having two days off since returning from Finland.  (Although I’m still trying to figure out if Kris Versteeg participated in a rat time at Johnny’s Ice House on Monday night.  I’m pretty sure it wasn’t him, but I’m not certain.)  The Tribune’s Chris Kuc has injury updates from practice

Dave Bolland, Troy Brouwer and Ben Eager all missed practice. Coach Joel Quenneville said Bolland was off for “maintenance” but is “going to be fine.” He along with Brouwer (lower body) will likely be in the lineup when the Hawks take on the Red Wings in Detroit on Thursday night. Eager (upper body) is going to be evaluated in the next day or two and is questionable.

I’m fascinated as to what kind of “maintenance” Dave Bolland needed.  Perhaps he needed new brake pads or maybe his transmission was shot.  

The Eager injury doesn’t sound as promising.  When the Hawks re-evaluate injuries, it usually results in missed time.  Kris Versteeg went from having a minor injury in the first pre-season game to missing the majority of the pre-season.  

Eager’s injury should also remind everyone how quickly the Hawks situation can turn perilous.  Well, at least until Marian Hossa finally comes back.  They are simply not in a position to lose regulars for extended periods of time without their roster taking a big hit. 

If you disagree, just take one look at those line combinations the Hawks used at practice today.  Yuck.

–In other news, Patrick Kane’s one minute and two seconds of penalty killing time is apparently all the rage.  I suppose this is kind of a big deal especially when you take into consideration Kane had a whopping 4:14 of penalty killing time all of last season.  Unfortunately, it’s not the most startling development about the Hawks special teams after the first two games.

What nobody is talking about thus far (and it’s still relatively early but still) is how much time Duncan Keith has seen on the power play.  In two games, Keith has seen a whole 46 seconds with the man advantage.  On the second power play unit, the Hawks have felt more comfortable using Patrick Sharp or Dave Bolland on the point than Keith.

Unless this drastically changes, then the ‘Duncan Keith as a Norris Trophy candidate’  talk will probably cool off fairly quickly.  Take a look at the list of Norris Trophy winners.    Since Bobby Orr’s reign of terror ended, the only defensemen to win it who wasn’t considered to be a top power play quarterback was Rod Langway in 1982-83 and 1983-84.

Again, it’s still incredibly early but it is something to keep a close eye on as the season progresses.

–I found this kind of humorous.  Dominic Moore signed a one-year deal with the Florida Panthers.  The same Dominic Moore who asked Brian Burke (with a straight face) for a 3-year, $12 million deal extension last year.  The same Dominic Moore who nearly caused a riot at the United Center last trade deadline when the Hawks didn’t acquire him.  The same Dominic Moore who cost Buffalo a 2nd round pick last year to acquire. 

You couldn’t make something like this up.

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One Response to Back to the Grind

  1. Lou says:

    Aaron Johnson to Calgary. Woo I am excited. Unless I am missing the bus this is a pure salary cap move.

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