By Chris Block
The Blackhawks jumped out to a 3-0 lead after just 15 minutes of the first period in Game 1, Friday night at United Center. Brandon Saad notched his third goal of postseason on an incredible power move and shot that he ripped by Devan Dubnyk at the 1:15 mark. Patrick Kane and Marcus Kruger scored 124 seconds apart later in the period to give the Hawks command of the game. Kane’s tally, also his 3rd of the playoffs, was set up by a great move (or, the $2M toe-drag, you could call it.) by Brad Richards entering the Wild zone.
But the Wild chipped away at the Hawks lead in the second period, and by the mid-way point of the second stanza, the game was tied 3-3. Minnesota’s marksmen Jason Zucker, Zach Parise and Mikael Granlund all scored to even the score at 1:21, 5:07 and 9:30 of the second respectively.
Neither starter, Dubnyk nor Corey Crawford were pulled from the game. Crawford stopped 30 of 33 shots. Dubnyk allowed 4 goals against 35 Blackhawks’ shots on net.
Chicago’s 4th and deciding goal came off the stick of Teuvo Teravainen with 59 seconds to go in the second period. The line of Antoine Vermette, Patrick Sharp and Teravainen were doing their work down in the Wild zone when Teravainen fired a puck toward the net from the half wall. Dubnyk might have been partially screened for a moment but he just whiffed at it with his glove and the puck sailed by him and into the net at 19:01 of the second.
The score remained that way throughout the 3rd period, though Minnesota’s Dubnyk had to come up with 15 saves in the final period to keep his team in the game.
Crawford’s win gives him a 2-1 record now in this postseason. Crawford is now 9-3 lifetime in postseason play versus Minnesota.
The Hawks are now 11-7 in Game 1’s under Joel Quenneville. They’ve gone on to win 9 of those 10 prior series in which they’ve won Game 1 under their current coach.
Game 2 is Sunday night at 7:30pm central on CBC and Sportsnet 360 in Canada and on NBCSports Network in the States.
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=E9XLs4BDdjk
Video of Bobby Shea attacking Ty Rattie in the tunnel at Allstate Arena.
(credit to Wolfkeeper.org on YouTube for the videos)
By Chris Block
Rockford got pummeled on Friday night at Allstate Arena in Rosemont, losing 6-0 to their division rival Chicago Wolves.
The game also got out of hand at moments, originally stemming from Wolves’ tough guy Eric Selleck coming off the bench on a line change to engage with IceHogs’ rookie Pat Mullane, who had just been jousting with Ty Rattie.
But the “highlight” of the evening belonged to Bobby Shea. The first year pro is a defenseman on the IceHogs. He took a run at St. Louis Blues’ prospect Ty Rattie with 36 seconds to go in the middle period.
Shea led with a high elbow that struck Rattie in the head. Afterwards, as Rattie was chirping at Shea in response to that action, Shea dropped his gloves and proceeded to level Rattie with a series of unanswered punches. Its believed Rattie suffered a broken nose in that sequence – be it on the elbow or in the fight.
A video look at the December 7, 2013 Rockford IceHogs – Charlotte Checkers contest through referee David Banfield’s helmet cam.
By Chris Block
There is still a lot more to come from Saturday night’s bench-clearing brawl between the IceHogs and Grand Rapids Griffins before a sellout crowd of 6,219 fans at the BMO Harris Bank Center in Rockford. [Video of the brawl is posted again at the bottom of this post]
230 penalty minutes in all were dealt out in Saturday’s game. 202 of those came as result of the brawl.
Frustrations from an IceHogs perspective had boiled over at the 11:58 mark of the second period after Grand Rapids forward Landon Ferraro scored a power play goal to put the visiting team ahead 6-3.
The IceHogs had been assessed five-straight minor penalties by the officials in the first eleven minutes of the second period alone and the Griffins had capitalized on two of those opportunities with the man-advantage. To that point in the contest, Grand Rapids was 3 for 6 on the power play. Rockford had just one power play chance to that point and it resulted in a Dylan Olsen goal, giving the IceHogs a 1-0 lead at 3:57 of the first period.
No one on the Rockford side after the game was entirely blaming the refs for the lopsided power plays going in Grand Rapids favor. The IceHogs players and coach admitted most of the calls against them were warranted. Although, it was the hooking call referee Joe Sullivan gave Terry Broadhurst that gave Grand Rapids the power play that Landon Ferraro would use to put his team up 6-3 that had the IceHogs livid with the officiating.
Former teammates Brandon Bollig and Kyle Hagel, drop the mitts and engage in a classic battle on December 15th at the BMO Harris Bank Center in Rockford.
Bollig and Hagel were teammates on the IceHogs in the 2010-11 season when Bollig was in his rookie season after spending two years at St. Lawrence University. Hagel, a Princeton University (2004-08) graduate, handled the bulk of the team’s enforcer role that season, fighting 31 times to Bollig’s 13. After that season, Hagel signed a two-way deal with the St. Louis Blues organization but his 2011-12 season was cut short in late October by major shoulder surgery. Hagel signed an AHL contract with his hometown Hamilton Bulldogs this past off season.
“He’s a tough kid,” Bollig said in respect of his former teammate following Saturday night’s contest.
“I’ve seen [Hagel] fight a lot of really tough guys. Those are the kind of fights that are fun when you’re in my position.”
Blackhawks ECHL affiliate Toledo Walleye gets the whole team involved in a special Christmas season video promotion.