Coyotes 3, Blackhawks 1

The Coyotes committed four crucial mistakes:

  • In the first period and on the penalty kill, a Coyotes defenseman whiffed on a clearing attempt instead feeding a wide-open Cam Barker at the point.
  • Late in the first period and on the power play, Adrian Aucoin allowed Kris Versteeg to sneak behind him.  Versteeg beat Aucoin to the loose puck and came in alone on Bryzgalov.
  • In the second period, the Coyotes got caught with too many men on a rush.  Duncan Keith intercepted a pass and sprung Patrick Sharp on a clear breakaway.
  • Not even a minute later, Patrick Kane got a breakaway of his own.

On most nights against NHL teams, at least two of those mistakes would have been buried in the back of their net.  

On this night, the Hawks didn’t even register a shot on goal from any of those chances.  Patrick Kane came the closest when his shot grazed the outside of the post and went out of play. 

Cam Barker, Kris Versteeg, and Patrick Sharp all missed the net.  

That pretty much sums up the Hawks night.

Three minutes into the game, John Madden made a careless pass behind the Coyote net.  Ed Jovanovski picked it up and gained the red line where he fed Martin Hanzal.  Brent Sopel gave Hanzal a ton of room.  Hanzal gladly accepted; took the puck wide and fired a shot towards the net.  The puck went between Cristobal Huet’s legs and Coyotes drew first blood.

After the Coyotes killed off the Hawks first power play of the night, the Hawks defensive pair of Brian Campbell and Cam Barker didn’t have the opportunity to get off the ice.  The Coyotes took advantage of the tired legs when Shane Doan threw the puck towards the net where it was re-directed by Hanzal.  With two Coyotes in front of the net and Campbell having to choose who to cover, the rebound went right to an uncovered Peter Mueller. 

Halfway through the second, Kris Versteeg got caught too far down in a forecheck and Phoenix came back the other way on a 4-on-3.  After some nifty passing, Scottie Upshall buried a shot and the ‘Yotes were up 3-0.

The Hawks cut into the lead just three minutes later when Patrick Kane picked up a loose puck on the penalty kill.  He forced the Coyotes defense to keep backing up and left a drop pass for Versteeg.  Versteeg put a shot towards the net and the puck went right between Bryzgalov’s legs. 

Later in the period, the Hawks generated some major pressure on the power play.  Bryzgalov made two huge stops on Tomas Kopecky tips and kept the lead at two goals going into the intermission.

In the third period, the Hawks thought they had cut the deficit to one goal with ten minutes left but Colin Fraser clearly kicked the puck into the net and the war room in Toronto took a whopping 15 seconds before disallowing it.

Bryzgalov carried it home the rest of the way for the Coyotes turning away whatever else the Hawks threw towards the net.


Yes, the power play went 0-for-6 tonight, but at least it resembled a professional unit for parts of the night.  You couldn’t say that a week ago.

-Not the best Dave Bolland performance I’ve ever seen.

-Speaking of performances, there was a Tomas Kopecky sighting tonight and I’m not just saying it because his newly hired PR staff of Pat Foley and Ed Olcyzk told me to.  He actually was getting to loose pucks and making plays happen.  Now if we can just see that on a more consistent basis….

-Keep this in mind before you grab your pitchforks and torches in the hunt for Cristobal Huet, the Hawks scored one goal.  Just one. 

*On the Farm*

-Shawn Lalonde made his return to the Belleville Bulls lineup on Wednesday night.  He notched an assist in their 4-3 shootout loss to the Peterborough Petes.  He also was stopped as the second shooter in the shootout.

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7 Responses to Coyotes 3, Blackhawks 1

  1. Lou says:

    IMHO, this line juggling thing is getting to be too much. I understand the need to change it up during the game but Q has taken it to a new extreme. Some of these combos are just ludicrous. Granted, we are really down four starters now but we need to keep some combos together and let them develop some chemistry. A by product of this our energy on lines is not consistent or we can’t generate it.

    I agree Bolland is blah right now. And is was pointed out that he is off the PP several times last night. Foley obviously picked up on that but not why. Bolland’s is either comfortable or his back is really bothering him.

    Like Colin Fraser didn’t know he kicked that in. I really want our team back to full strength so that clown can just sit.

    The next three games are against top conference teams. First gut check time of the season.

  2. Dave Morris says:

    I cite the ‘Thong Factor’ here.

    If you watched the PHX-based TV feed last night, you may have noticed two fetching ladies in skintight powderblue tops and cowboy hats, sitting in the stands.

    They are local talent employed by the Yotes to entertain visiting teams.

    Misty and Cristy, feature entertainers at The Cheetah just off Camelback Road, did their job. The Hawks and their Dads had a wonderful time in the Champagne Room at The Cheetah.

    We saw the result.

    That is what ex-Yote Tyson Nash, doing the color commentary, calls ‘Desert Hangover’.

    And yes, Patrick Sharp was wearing Misty’s thong last night. Just like he promised her he would.

  3. John says:

    If you say so, Dave. If you say so.

  4. Josh says:

    Tonight’s match against the Avs may be the first statement game of our young season, and I’m not feeling too confident.

  5. John says:

    I’m not very confident tonight either but I’d be careful before I start calling it some kind of statement game or anything like that.

    The Hawks aren’t playing two of their best players and their fourth line is still less than ideal. By March, we may be having a nice chuckle about how we thought a game in early November against the Avalanche was some kind of litmus test.

  6. Josh says:

    Hopefully, but with the several consecutive lackluster showings of late, I’d rather we get things turned around sooner rather than later. A win against a very hot team playing excellent hockey should provide a boatload of confidence and quiet some naysayers.

  7. Dave Morris says:

    @John> Mr. Sharp couldn’t hit the net, could he?

    “Thong Factor”.

    As far as tonight goes, hopefully Bickell adds some pickle juice to the Hawk Squad. Da Boyz are looking way too much like Mr. Softee.

    Cody McLeod will be looking for Adam Burish…oh, geez, he ain’t there. Who else might he want to beat on?

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