Author Archives: Brad Vandenberk

Ducks take Game 1 in Anaheim 4-1

By Brad Vandenberk

Finally, after waiting 10 days, game one of the Western Conference Final was played at the Honda Center in beautiful Anaheim. The Hawks have been trying to stay in game shape after disposing of the Wild in 4 straight games. There was one more test that stood in their way to reaching the Stanley Cup and it was the Ducks. They came to play this afternoon, but it was the Ducks who took game one with a 4-1 victory. Brad Richards scored the lone goal for the Hawks with 39 seconds left in the second period. That would be all she wrote from there.

Corey Crawford and Frederik Andersen were in net for this one and Andersen looked sharp, absolutely robbing Patrick Kane on a wide open net. David Rundblad replaced Michel Rozsival who broke his ankle and will not be able to resume playing until next season. Rundblad was very noticeable but in a bad way, almost solely being responsible for 2 of the Ducks goals. Read more »

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Hawks stars tame Wild to take a 2-0 series lead

By Brad Vandenberk

The Wild came into game 2 of this Central division final not having lost a back to back game since the All-star game in January. The Hawks were confident, even though they squandered a 3-0 lead in game 1, but still found a way to close it out. Jonathan Toews opens the scoring shorthanded, then it was Patrick Kane and Patrick Sharp who did the rest. Kane scored 2 goals, one being an empty netter and Sharp restoring the 2 goal lead early in the third period.

Corey Crawford faced off against Devan Dubnyk who has been hot of late. Crawford literally stood on his head to keep the Wild off the score sheet until Matt Dumba found a way but it wasn’t enough. Kris Versteeg remained out of the line up with a lower body injury creating a spot for Teuvo Teravainen who played great and has a bright future. Read more »

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Seabrook blast ends Game 4 in Triple OT, Hawks take 3-1 series lead on Nashville

By Brad Vandenberk

There was a marathon at the United Center on Tuesday night as the Hawks found themselves beating the Nashville Predators in three overtimes, 3-2.

Chicago did not hold a single lead during the game, but still eventually found a way to win and take a commanding 3-1 series lead. Brandon Saad scored the tying goal with Antoine Vermette getting his first tally as a Blackhawk, tipping one past Rinne in the opening period, the first of six on Tuesday.

Shea Weber and Mike Fisher did not dress for this one, but you can be sure with their season on the line that they will try and play on Thursday night when the series shifts back to Nashville. Scott Darling and Pekka Rinne faced a ton of traffic and shots and lasted the entire 5 periods. Read more »

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Wild ruin Hawks regular season home finale

By Brad Vandenberk

The final home game of the regular season played at the United Center arrived for the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday night. The visiting Minnesota Wild played their boring style of stifling teams to shot from the outside helping Devan Dubnyk make saves. It was successful as Mikael Granlund and Jason Zucker both scored to guarantee a Wild playoff spot with a 2-1 victory. Bryan Bickell scored late and Corey Crawford was playoff ready making some sensational saves, but putting the puck in the net is number one and the Hawks just didn’t have it.

Kimmo Timonen did not dress for this one with an upper body injury. It was announced, after the absence of Brad Richards during the morning skate, that the veteran would be done for the rest of the regular season with an upper body injury as well. This gave the opportunity for Kyle Baun to make his NHL debut. Joakim Nordstrom made his way back onto the fourth line, sending Andrew Desjardins back to the press box. David Rundblad and Michal Rozsival were both in the lineup. Read more »

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Hawks clinch playoff berth in 3-1 win over VAN

By Brad Vandenberk

After winning a tough back to back against Winnipeg and LA, the Blackhawks looked to continue the momentum on Thursday with a visit from the Canucks. Vancouver was also in a playoff battle hoping to lock up a playoff spot with a victory last night.

But it was the Hawks that would be guaranteed a spot in the 2015 postseason with a 3-1 win behind the strong net minding of Corey Crawford. He stopped 36 shots making some great saves on most of the Canucks stars. Teuvo Teravainen, Jonathan Toews and Marcus Kruger all the put puck past Eddie Lack. Kruger picked up an assist and the second star of the game. Read more »

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Hawks sliding out of Central race, lose at home 5-2 to former foes, Columbus Blue Jackets

By Brad Vandenberk

After completing a 2 game road trip through the week with stops in Carolina and Philadelphia, returned to home soil to face a familiar foe in the Columbus Blue Jackets. This would spell the return of Jeremy Morin who saw 6:50 of ice and tallied 1 hit. The Hawks got on the board early but the Jackets did not stop coming putting 4 on the board in the first period and never looking back beating the Hawks 5-2 at the UC. This could not have come at a worse time as the Wild are now just 1 point behind them for 3rd in the Central division.

Corey Crawford got the start for the Hawks who was pulled midway through the first for Scott Darling. Sergei Bobrovsky shut the door making some key saves to get the win. Michal Rozsival did not play in this one as it was time for David Rundblad to see some action. Dan Carcillo and Joakim Nordstrom were both out with upper body injuries. Read more »

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Hawks 4-game winning streak dumped in Dallas by a 4-0 score

By Brad Vandenberk

Chicago continued their road trip with a stop in Big D to face the Stars on Saturday night. The arena was packed with red jerseys as Hawks fans were heard to open the game with a “let’s go Hawks” chant. Those few would be disappointed as the Hawks would lay an egg losing 4-0 to a team that is 8 points out of the playoffs. The Stars took advantage of the Hawks careless defensive mistakes scoring on two giveaways. They also allowed two power play goals off the stick of Tyler Seguin and Shawn Horcoff.

Michal Rozsival was back in the lineup after sitting in New York on Wednesday. David Rundblad was the odd man out on defense. Andrew Desjardins and Dan Carcillo were also out of the lineup for this one. Corey Crawford battled against the Stars Kari Lehtonen who made 33 saves to record his 5th shutout of the season. Kimmo Timonen played his 1100 game playing for 13:15. Read more »

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Toews, Hossa and Sharp topple Islanders 4-1, Shaw headbutts his way out of game

By Brad Vandenberk

After a successful road trip with some proud poppas, it was time to head back home and play the first of a back to back with a few teams from New York. First up it’s the surprising Islanders, who have earned a playoff spot at this stage.

The Hawks make short work of the boys from Long island scoring 2 goals in the first period, both off the stick of Jonathan Toews. Marian Hossa added two more in the second to finish of the Isle 4-1. Next stop it’s a quick flight to MSG to face the Rangers on Wednesday night. There was one negative that came out of Tuesday night’s victory, however. Andrew Shaw was given a game misconduct for head butting that will probably be reviewed by the league.

Nick Leddy did make the trip to Chicago but did not dress to face his old mates as he is just coming back from injury. Read more »

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Hawks edge Panthers 3-2, but need a shootout; Kane leaves game with major injury

By Brad Vandenberk

After suffering an embarrassing loss on home ice against the Bruins on Sunday afternoon, the Blackhawks shifted the focus on Tuesday to the Florida Panthers, who are battling for a playoff spot, and would love to take full advantage of a depleted Hawks squad.

Scott Darling was recalled from Rockford on Sunday night with Joakim Nordstrom. Ryan Hartman and Antti Raanta were sent back down to what seemed to be a salary type move. Which can only mean one thing. Nothing, it means nothing. Darling was then signed to a 2 year contract extension.

Darling was also named the started for this game helping the Hawks edge the Panthers 3-2 in a shootout. Jonathan Toews and Kris Versteeg were the goal scorers with Patrick Sharp lending a hand in the shootout. This would be the last game for this 8 game home stand recording 3-3-2. Read more »

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Hawks squeak by Pens in a shootout 2-1

By Brad Vandenberk

Another somber Sunday morning for the Chicago Blackhawks and the hockey world. Steve Montador, once a part of the Hawks organization, was found dead at his home at the age of 35. This would be the second untimely death for the Blackhawks family in months.

The Hawks would rise up to the occasion once again, though, winning one for Stevie in a shootout 2-1 against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Patrick Sharp took the winning shot with Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane up to their old tricks, pulling some sweet moves in the shootout to take their second win in a row.

Corey Crawford has no doubt returned back to his form before his injury, stopping 37 of 38 Penguins shots. He even made a beautiful right pad save late in the second period. Marc Andre Fleury was sharp for the Penguins and showed frustration after letting Sharp’s winning snipe in.

Michal Rozsival returned to the lineup after missing one game with an upper body injury. Kyle Cumiskey along with Ryan Hartman would be back for their second straight game. This spelt bad news for David Rundblad who took this morning off. Ben Smith was back in just after the warm ups meaning Dan Carcillo was also sitting for this one. Read more »

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