Hartman snaps drought: Injury updates on Mark McNeill, Leighton; More info on McNeill

Hartman_Brennan_OTW_2014Nov21_RockfordIceHogs
Ryan Hartman (24) and T.J. Brennan (7) hug out their OT winning-goal  connection on Fri Nov 21st in Rockford
Photo credit: Rockford IceHogs

By Chris Block

Blackhawks 2013 first round draft pick Ryan Hartman got off to a good start offensively this season, then fell off the scoresheets for a few weeks.

On Friday, Hartman snapped a 9-game pointless streak. He tallied twice for the IceHogs, including the game-tying in the third period, then the overtime game-winner in a 4-3 win over the Iowa Wild in Rockford. The goals were Hartman’s 3rd and 4th of the season.

The local product was originally credited with two goals in a 3-2 Opening night loss to Milwaukee on October 11st, but one of those would later rightly be given to defenseman Zach Miskovic.

Following his two-goal performance on Friday, Hartman said he was never concerned about his drop off in offensive production.

“It’s part of hockey. I’ve done that plenty of times before,” said Hartman. “There’s times when the puck’s not going your way. Read more »

Hartman snaps 2, drought, in IceHogs 4-3 OT win over Iowa

By Chris Block

Playing without four of the team’s top regulars, including their leading scorer (Mark McNeill) and team captain (Joakim Nordstrom), the Rockford IceHogs returned to action Friday night with the AHL West’s last-placed Iowa Wild visiting northern Illinois.

The IceHogs saw their roster stripped of last year’s leading scorer in defenseman Adam Clendening, who made his NHL debut for the Blackhawks in Calgary on Thursday night, notching his first NHL goal in the contest.  Then, after that game, the IceHogs’ parent club recalled center Phillip Danault, who will now also be making his NHL debut in Edmonton on Saturday.

Danault and Clendening joined IceHogs’ captain Joakim Nordstrom, who was recalled by the ‘Hawks last Saturday, the same day McNeill limped off the ice at the BMO Harris Bradley Center in Milwaukee after blocking a shot off his knee.

Yet without four of their best players, the IceHogs found a way to pickup two points against Iowa on Friday.  Ryan Hartman scored twice, and left winger Ryan Schnell posted a ‘Gordie Howe’ hat-trick in Rockford’s 4-3 come-from-behind OT victory over the Wild. Read more »

Clendening Makes Most of NHL Debut, Hawks Win 4-3 In Calgary

By Jon Fromi

Adam Clendening showed his power play prowess to his new Chicago Blackhawks team mates Thursday night. The rookie defenseman struck twine in his NHL debut to help Chicago knock off the Calgary Flames 4-3 in the Saddledome. Patrick Kane scored the game-winner and set up another Hawks goal as Chicago picked up two points in the first game of a six-game road trip.

First Period-T.J. Brodie held Brandon Saad’s stick two minutes into the contest to provide an early chance to jump out to a lead. Thanks to the new kid, they did.

Adam Clendening took a return pass from Marian Hossa and blasted a one-timer from the point. The shot beat Jonas Hiller thanks in part to a screen by Kris Versteeg, settling into the net right at the four-minute mark to give Clendening his first NHL goal and the Hawks a 1-0 lead. Read more »

Lindbloom’s View: Where rubber meets the road

Lindbloom_2014Nov20_1Sailing Off To Distant Shores

I wish to have no connection with any ship that does not sail fast; for I intend to go in harms way.” – John Paul Jones

By Rich Lindbloom

For those of you who need a brush up on US history, John Paul Jones was referred to as The Father of the U S Navy. You may recognize a quote of his I read on Wikipedia that is perhaps a bit more memorable;

“During his engagement with HMS Serapis, Jones uttered, according to the later recollection of his first lieutenant, the legendary reply to a taunt about surrender from the British captain: “Surrender, HELL, I have not yet begun to fight!”

This recollection of John Paul Jones was brought about while waiting in the lobby of a customer I was calling upon recently. I found myself intently gazing at a huge painting of a frigate navigating high winds and treacherous seas. Read more »

Fantasy Chatter: Week 7 – Pacing Yourself & the Waiver Wire: East Coast Bias Edition

ItsAlwaysSunny_PaceYourselfTTMI

The Week Ahead: Week 7, Nov 17 – Nov 23

4 Game slates: ARI, MON, NYR, STL, TB
3 Game slates: ANA, BOS, BUF, CAL, CAR, CHI, CLB, DAL, DET, EDM, FLA, LA, NASH, NJ, NYI, PHI, PIT, SJ, TOR, VAN, WASH, WINN
2 Game slates: COL, MIN, OTT

By Lane Myer

Chasing points stinks.   You’re fully aware of this because chasing wins from goalies in fantasy hockey or W’s from starting pitchers in fantasy baseball can be maddening. One of the follies fantasy hockey players might run into at this time of the year, at least for those of you in standard roto leagues (where there are games played limitations), is balancing chasing those points and trying to maintain your league’s games played pace. It’s even more difficult to restrain yourself if you find your drafted heroes well behind the leaders in your league’s current standings. Read more »

Hawks post 6 unanswered 3rd period goals on route to 6-2 win over the Stars

By Brad Vandenberk

After an abysmal game in Detroit on Friday, the Chicago Blackhawks returned home Sunday night to play division rival Dallas Stars. The final period saw an explosion of goals on route to a 6-2 victory behind 6 different Hawks players adding a multi-point night.

The new lines constructed by Coach Q combined for 13 points and a power play goal from Brent Seabrook. Corey Crawford stood strong for the home team including surrendering 2 Dallas goals within 39 seconds. Kari Lehtonen was the victim to all 6 Blackhawk goals. Dan Carcillo, Michal Rozsival and newly called up Joakim Nordstrom were inserted into the lineup with Jeremy Morin and Dave Rundblad watching from above.

Two scary moments during the game when Trevor VanRiemsdyk was hit in the left leg with a shot and left halfway through the first period, not returning. Jonathan Toews almost lost an ear when Tyler Seguin was falling to the ice getting his skate up on captain serious, just kicking his helmet. Coach Q stated that TVR could be out “awhile.” Read more »

News on Blackhawks roster moves Saturday; Mark McNeill injured in IceHogs game in Milwaukee

2014Nov14_Darling_Scott_vs_Milwaukee_IceHogsScott Darling, November 14, 2014 vs Milwaukee Admirals
Photo courtesy of Rockford IceHogs

By Chris Block

The Blackhawks made a series of roster moves on Saturday that were released over the course of the day out of necessity ahead of their next game, Sunday night at the United Center.

First, Peter Regin was reassigned to the Rockford IceHogs (AHL) prior the Blackhawks Saturday morning practice. In 4 games played with the Blackhawks, Regin averaged 8:20 of ice time. He had one assist and three shots on goal.

This move wouldn’t come as a surprise, as Joel Quenneville also announced on Saturday that Dan Carcillo (knee) would return to Chicago’s lineup on Sunday when the Blackhawks host the Dallas Stars. Since Regin had to clear waivers to go to Rockford in October, he’ll have to go through the process again if he’s played in ten NHL games or spent 30 days on the NHL roster. Thus, Regin’s demotion was inevitable.

Carcillo, 29, was injured on October 25th in St. Louis. He’s missed the past 10 games.

Later in the day, however, the Hawks then announced the recall of forward Joakim Nordstrom from Rockford. Nordstrom was named Rockford’s team captain last month. In 14 games this season with the IceHogs, the 22-year old Swede has 5 goals and 3 assists. Nordstrom is averaging a little better than 2 shots on goal per game and has a minus-1 rating. He’s mostly skated on the right wing with Dennis Rasmussen and Teuvo Teravainen being his primary centers.  The Nordstrom recall indicates there’s likely a need for a healthy forward that’s more urgent than the upcoming road trip.

The more newsworthy transaction (for now) came at 11pm central, when the Blackhawks recalled goaltender Scott Darling from the IceHogs. In doing so, Chicago also reassigned Antti Raanta back to Rockford.

We can report independently that the decision to recall Darling and send Raanta to Rockford was made earlier in the day on Saturday, and prior to Rockford’s game in Milwaukee. Read more »

Hawks crushed in Motown

By Michael Calvert

The Hawks skated into Joe Louis Arena on Friday riding a pretty impressive regular season unbeaten streak against the Red Wings. However, on this night, it was clear the home team had more jump from the get go.

As he’s been want to of late, Quenneville rolled out some pretty unusual lines, notably putting Versteeg on the first line and Hossa on the third.

1st period: Hawks get the game’s initial pp at 17:55. The first pp unit ran with both Keith and Seabs on the blue line opposed to having a forward back with Keith. Brad Richards is still on the 2nd pp unit so Coach Q is still showing some faith in our new 4th line center.

At 6:09 in the first the Wings capitalize on a terrible Versteeg turnover to score the game’s first goal. Read more »

Hawks trade leads with NHL’s top team, win 3-2; Kane tops Tampa Bay in the shootout

By Brad Vandenberk

The Tampa Bay Lightning entered the United Center on Tuesday night looking for their 7th straight victory and owning the league’s best record.

Some have this pegged Lightning-Blackhawks as a potential Stanley Cup final. Although the game had a playoff type feel to it, it took a shootout to solve this one, as the Hawks took it behind the strong play of Corey Crawford 3-2. Ben Bishop made life difficult for the Hawks as they outshot the Lightning 39-27. Jonathan Toews competed in his 500th career game. Read more »

Defensemen lead way in Blackhawks’ 5-2 victory over San Jose; Hawks snap home losing streak

By Jon Fromi

The Chicago Blackhawks got three goals from the defensive corps to get out in front of the visiting San Jose Sharks Sunday night. The Hawks hung on to post a 5-2 victory at the United Center behind a solid effort from Corey Crawford to go with the first NHL goal for Trevor van Riemsdyk.

[editor’s note: The NHL changed the scoring on the Hawks’ first goal on Monday, taking it away from van Riemsdyk and crediting it to Kris Versteeg.]

First Period-The Blackhawks outshot San Jose 20-9 in the opening 20 minutes as Chicago defenders accounted for a trio of goals.

A nice hole by Johnny Oduya led to a scoring chance for Ben Smith in the slot. However, Logan Couture prevented Smith from getting off a shot. van Riemsdyk took a drop pass from Patrick Kane and sent a shot on goal that Antti Niemi smothered in the fourth minute. Read more »