Chicago Blackhawks Playing Down To Their Competition Is Troubling Trend | Bleacher Report

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NHL: Jets defeat Blackhawks 4-2 behind 3rd-period rally – Daily Republican Register: Daily Republican Register

The only one-goal loss was their hard-luck 3-2 decision to the Capitals in the Winter Classic, when former Blackhawk Troy Brouwer scored the game-winning goal with 13 seconds remaining in the third period. In addition to struggling against teams that they would normally beat with ease, the Blackhawks had problems with their even-strength play and their inability to get off to good starts. They were outscored 19-13 in even-strength situations, and that’s normally an area where the Blackhawks dominate. According to NHL.com, Chicago is scoring 1.27 goals for every goal their opponents score in five-on-five situations, ranking fifth in the league. However, during that cold spell, they were scoring just 0.68 goals to each goal their opponents scored when both teams were at full strength. High-level teams like the Blackhawks can normally overcome the occasional slow start because they have so much firepower with superstars such as Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews, Patrick Sharp and Duncan Keith in the lineup. However, even the best teams have problems when they get outscored consistently in the first period. Andy Devlin/Getty Images The Blackhawks were outscored 16-7 in the first periods during that eight-game stretch, and it explains why they had so much trouble against the likes of the Avs and Oilers. Those teams are used to falling behind, and when they face deficits in the second and third periods, it’s difficult for them to maintain a winning attitude and compete for 60 minutes. However, when the Oilers came out of the first period in their Jan. 9 meeting with a 2-1 lead over the Hawks, despite giving up the first goal, they came out for the second period with renewed vigor and a confidence that they have rarely shown. source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2330395-chicago-blackhawks-playing-down-to-their-competition-is-troubling-trend

He leads the Blackhawks with a plus-15 rating, and Quenneville was playing him an average of 16:01 per game. That’s a far cry from what he did last year after the Blackhawks reacquired him in a trade from the Florida Panthers early in the season. He scored just 10 goals and 19 assists and was a non-factor in the playoffs with a goal and two assists in 15 games. Versteeg has been alert, aggressive and opportunistic this year, and he will make the Blackhawks a more dangerous team when he returns to the lineup. Tweet There are no surprises in this category, as Duncan Keith remains the Blackhawks’ best defenseman and is still one of the best at his position in the league. You wouldn’t expect anything else from a player who is a two-time winner of the Norris Trophy. Keith has remarkable offensive instincts and regularly puts them on display. He is so adept at carrying the puck and skating it out of the defensive zone to start the Chicago attack. Keith is a pinpoint passer who can put tape-to-tape passes on the sticks of the Blackhawks’ highly talented offensive players. He has scored six goals and 20 assists, and he has the ability to put together multiple-point games on a regular basis. He has a plus-12 rating and is averaging 25:57 of ice time per game. Keith’s presence on the ice means good things usually happen for the Blackhawks, as his on-ice Corsi mark of plus-18.66 percent indicates, per Behind the Net. source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2330057-chicago-blackhawks-awards-for-the-1st-half-of-the-2014-15-season

Chicago Blackhawks’ Awards for the 1st Half of the 2014-15 Season | Bleacher Report

However, he has been playing much better in recent weeks, and he has nine goals and nine assists for the year after a brutally slow start. If Bickell can continue to produce the way he has in recent gamesfive goals and seven points in his last seven gamesthe line will be dangerous. Grade: B+ No. 3 Line: Patrick Sharp, Andrew Shaw, Teuvo Teravainen USA TODAY Sports The Blackhawks’ No. 3 line provides an excellent example of why this team is so dangerous and will be such a tough opponent during the postseason. Left wing Patrick Sharp was the team’s leading scorer a year ago with 34 goals and 44 assists, yet he is playing on Quenneville’s third line this season. There’s a reason for that. He has been a top-line or second-line player throughout his career, but he injured his knee in November and missed about a month of action. Since his return last month, Quenneville has played him on several different lines, and there’s no reason to think he won’t continue to be moved around. However, he has the speed, brilliant shot and instincts to score key goals at big moments. Sharp has nine goals and 12 assists in 29 games, but he also has a minus-seven rating. Based on his track record, Sharp’s plus-minus is likely to improve since he was plus-13 last season and a career-best plus-28 in 2011-12. source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2328156-midseason-grades-for-each-line-on-the-chicago-blackhawks

Midseason Grades for Each Line on the Chicago Blackhawks | Bleacher Report

“But they’re a different team than we saw last year. That’s a team that can win and beat anybody because they work their tails off.” Chicago rookie Teuvo Teravainen got his first NHL goal, Brandon Saad also scored, and Corey Crawford finished with 31 saves. “Tonight, I just thought I was ready to shoot everything,” the 20-year-old Teravainen said. Jets forward Mathieu Perreault left the ice gingerly with 9.4 seconds left in the second period after being cross-checked across the back by Chicago’s Daniel Carcillo, and didn’t return. Perreault, who scored four goals against Florida on Tuesday, had six goals and three assists in his last five games. The Blackhawks dominated early in an uptempo, physical first period punctuated by two free-swinging fights. Saad opened the scoring just 53 seconds in when he backhanded a rolling puck from the left circle, and the rising shot slipped past Hutchinson’s right elbow. The Jets came on as the period progressed and tested Crawford with some prime chances. Bogosian tied it at 1 midway through the first on a low screened shot from inside the blue line after taking a feed from Ladd. Winnipeg’s Adam Lowry was in front of the crease as the puck slipped under Crawford’s pads. Following a scoreless and scrappy second period, the Jets came out strong in early in the third. Little’s power-play goal, set up by Bogosian’s slick pass, put the Jets ahead 2-1 at 9:31 of the third. source: http://tristate-media.com/drr/nhl-jets-defeat-blackhawks—behind-rd-period-rally/article_ae91f9d0-9e2a-11e4-925f-bbef622c955e.html

 

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