Archive for the ‘Penalties’ category

Thoughts on the Blackhawks and the Devil’s Trapezoid

March 14, 2010

We’re coming into the home stretch of the season and some things are beginning to bug me.

1.  The Blackhawks.  There is something about the way they are playing that is making me feel uncomfortable.  I can’t put my finger on it though.  The last two losses to the Caps and Flyers didn’t help that feeling.  It’s not about goaltending, even though it’s been less than solid.  It’s a team dynamic thing.  It’s about giving up goals in bunches.  It’s about perhaps being too cocky or confident.  It’s about not being able to always put teams away.  It was summed up when Captain Jonathan Toews said today, “We’ve got the most skill in the league, on any team.  There’s no reason, up 3-0, we can’t go out and finish the team off.” 

He’s right that the Hawks should be able to finish of a team when they’re up 3-0, but I don’t buy that the Hawks are the most skilled team in the league – and most teams in the NHL don’t think that either.  So now, when teams are looking for that extra something to make the playoffs, they’ll have Toew’s  little tidbit posted on their locker room walls.  It’s bad enough that teams are gunning for you because you’re a top team but to say you’re the most skilled team will just tick some teams off and make the Blackhawk’s road to the Cup that much more difficult.

I do value that as Captain he’s trying to fire the boys up, and hopefully he knows his team best and they will respond.    But, only time will tell…

2. Please, please PLEEEEEASE get rid of the stupid trapezoid behind the net (It was such a relief and pleasure to watch Olympic hockey without it).  Last night I watched a game where the puck was trickling to the goal line and a player from the other team was bearing down on the goalie but still was a few strides away (a teammate was coming down the opposite boards).  The goalie accidentally touched the puck almost in the corner and was given a delay of game penalty.  I was stunned.  I know that’s what’s given for the infraction but here the goalie clearly kept play moving and prevented a lull where the puck would’ve died just past the goal line and we would’ve waited for someone to catch up to the puck.  A Delay of Game?  Why not call it a ‘Bettman’?  

New Jersey Penalty, Number thirty, Martin Brodeur, 2 minutes for a Bettman at 14:36, Brodeur 2 minutes for a Bettman at 14:36.  Penalty being served by….”

That has a ring to it!

It’s Almost Over

May 24, 2009

melt michael plishka 2009

The meltdown occurred.

A young Blackhawks team that has battled its way out of adversity in the past has met its match.  Now, while the series is not yet over, being down 3-1 and being drubbed 6-1 in game 4, in your home building, is basically a cue to get tee times ready for next week.

I was particularly puzzled and disappointed by Coach Q’s complaint about the officiating, especially when there were plenty of other things to find fault with, namely the play on the ice. 

Once again, Brian Campbell made it clear why his playoff play has been questioned in the past by making us question it again in the present.

I’ve been pulling for Huet and saying he can be as good as Khabibulin but he wasn’t great today.  He was great at times, but overall, when he needed to make stops, he didn’t.

Duncan Keith and the rest of the defensive crew once again showed that when the pressure’s on, they make stupid plays.  

Again, Kane and Toews couldn’t get free and threaten.

Oh, did I mention that this loss was to a Detroit team that was minus stars, Nicklas Lidstrom and Pavel Datsyuk?

I’m not disappointed in what the Hawks did this year.  They surpassed my predictions and expectations, but I had a feeling, as I mentioned before, that this round would be the end of the line – or the beginning of the line to the First Tee.

It’s been a good run. 

Thanks, Hawks, and I hope you at least can bring the Wings back to Chicago for a better send off for yourselves and the Wings.

This year deserves better.

When is a Broken Stick a Sign?

January 31, 2009
Broke Multiple Sticks in Loss Tonite

Broke Multiple Sticks in Loss Tonite

Well, the Chicago Wolves dropped a heartbreaker to the Milwaukee Admirals Friday night.

The key goal was a shot that Pavelec saved but then gave up a rebound to the slot which a wide open Kelsey Wilson ripped into an empty net.   Pavelec then responded, furiously breaking his stick over the cross bar.  He then went to the bench, got a stick and broke that one.  Grabbed a third and kept it for the game.

In defense of Pavelec, the shot was low and hard to control. 

Yes, he should have controlled the rebound better.  But, a goalies responsibility is the first shot.  Rebounds are the responsibility of defensemen.  Wilson was WIDE open and not a Wolves player was even close to him when he scored.

Pavelec may have broken the stick because he got down on himself for giving up a rebound on a shot that even the best goalies have a tough time controlling (and he’s one of the best in the AHL!).  I think there was also latent frustration in missed defensive assignments that led to the stick breaking as well.

MORE TELLING…

He got a two minute minor for unsportsmanlike conduct. Not a good thing when you have to come from behind late in the third period.

The game before Brett Sterling got a penalty for mouthing off as well.

Players are starting to take selfish penalties and that’s not a good sign.  There’s a frustration among the players that’s starting to show and when teammates get frustrated with the team-that’s not good.

I think Coach Granato is back on YELLOW ALERT.