by Vince Maranto on 11/24/11 at 11:30 AM ET
Before I even get into anything, I’d like to wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving. May we all avoid any “5 minute majors” with our families today. I am writing this, by the way, while baking my T-Day apple pies.
Before game 3 of the annual circus trip versus San Jose (the circus is at the United center, hence the name) the Hawks stopped off in Las Vegas. After getting annihilated by both Calgary and Edmonton, this was the perfect time for Coach Q’s one on one player meetings. The Hawks do this 4 times a year, every 20 games or so through out the season. I’m sure that there was PLENTY to talk about during the conferences. Defense probably a common theme. Both Power Play (9/24 in the previous 6 games -38%) and the Penalty Kill I’m sure were also addressed. The Hawks have failed to be consistent in these areas, going up and down in both aspects.
It was Crawford vs, the RED HOT Niemi, who was 4-0, 1.5 GAA, in his last 4 starts.. No Seabrook, lower body for the game, although he did participate in the skate around. Keith and Hjalmarsson were matched up at the start of the game. I can’t recall that happening before. Ben smith was a healthy scratch, with Bickell getting another opportunity to redeem himself after a very disappointing start..
In the first, both goalies came up with big saves with Nemo really shining. Break away attempts by both Hossa and Bickell came up short. The Hawks were unsuccessful on 2 Power Play attempts (so much for the current trend) and neither team scored. I told my son that I hope the Hawks score first. You just got the feeling that one goal would win this thing. Hawks out shot the Sharks 10-5.
In the second period the teams went back and forth, The Hawks were unsuccessful on another Power Play, with Bolland missing a wide open net. It was Niemi’s only mistake of the night. The Hawks then went 2 for 3 on the Penalty Kill. Demers scored the lone goal, right off a face off. The puck sort of skidded and bounced. 1 - 0 Sharks, who were out shot 23 - 11 in the game so far.
In the third there were a couple of P.K.‘s, and a 4 - 4, and a Power Play, but nothing occurred. The one goal (there’s a phrase to come back and bite ya) proved to be all San Jose needed. 0 points in the last 3 games…....
The Hawks will do it again Friday in an afternoon game against the Ducks.
Pie # 1 is done, have a great holiday, every one!
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