By Jon Fromi
The Rockford IceHogs have played 48 games of their 2012-13 schedule. Despite avoiding the poor start that has plagued the team in recent seasons, post lockout struggles have put the IceHogs in an all-too-familiar position. Namely, near the bottom of the AHL Western Conference and looking at an uphill climb to a spot in the playoffs for the first time since the 2009-10 campaign.
Saturday’s effort at the BMO Center didn’t inspire confidence as the IceHogs were shutout by Houston 2-0. Since play resumed last month, Rockford has limped to a 3-7 mark. The luck wasn’t any better against the Aeros.
Both Aeros goals were of the same variety. Ben Youds failed to clear the Hogs zone in the waning seconds of the opening period, leading to a two-on-one chance that was made good when Johan Larsson beat a sprawling Henrik Karlsson with eight seconds left. Read more
Posted in Game recap, IceHogs
Tagged Ben Youds, Brad Mills, Brian Connelly, Henrik Karlsson, IceHogs, Jake Dowell, Kenndal McArdle, Mark Bernard, Rockford, Shawn Lalonde, Ted Dent
It appears Cristobal Huet will ride out the final year of his Blackhawks’ contract in Europe again this season. Huet is apparently in negotiations to rejoin Fribourg-Gotteron of Switzerland’s National-A league for their 2011-12 season. There had been reports in French and German newspapers indicating Huet was set to join the team for a second season. However, a statement released by Fribourg-Gotteron on Tuesday stated that a loan agreement with the Blackhawks is not yet finalized.
Should a deal be worked out, Huet would again be teammates with former Chicago Wolves’ winger Simon Gamache. He’d also have a new one. Former Blackhawk defenseman and 2003 2nd round pick (59th overall), Michal Barinka has joined Fribourg-Gotteron after time in the Czech and KHL (Yaroslavl) leagues last season.
Despite a strong 2010-11 campaign, Huet was unable to carry a lackluster Fribourg-Gotteron roster above their 22-22-3-3 record, good enough for an 8th place finish out of 12 teams. Huet did not play well, nor did he get much help, in the team’s brief 4-games-to-none playoff exit at the hands of eventual Swiss league champion, HC Davos.
Fribourg opens training camp this week. Their regular season begins on the road, September 9th against Jussi Markkanen, Andy Wozniewski, Glen Metropolit; members of EV Zug. Read more
Posted in News and Notes
Tagged Becky Conner, Bobby Hull, Brent Sopel, Bryan Bickell, Chris Chelios, Colin Fraser, Craig MacTavish, Cristobal Huet, Gary Suter, Jake Dowell, Jimmy Hayes, John Torchetti, Kevyn Adams, Kyle Beach, Mike Peluso, Novokuznetsk, Ryan Kesler, Stan Mikita, Tony Amonte
Michael Frolik, Chris Campoli and Viktor Stalberg all received qualifying offers by Monday’s 4pm deadline as expected.
One player who did not is center Jake Dowell. According to Dowell’s agent Neil Sheehy in a report by ESPNChicago.com, the Blackhawks chose not to tender the Blackhawks center a standard qualifying offer, thus setting Dowell up for unrestricted free agency on July 1st.
The Hawks are looking to upgrade their fourth line and Monday’s news would appear to indicate Dowell is another odd man out. To retain Dowell’s rights, the Hawks would have needed to make him a “qualifying” offer of one year and $605,000.
It’s also important to note that Dowell was scheduled to be tested for Huntington’s disease this spring, a condition both his father and brother suffer from. There have been plans in the works by the Blackhawks to hold a Huntington’s benefit this upcoming season.
The qualifying offers to Frolik, Campoli and Stalberg essentially give the team right of first refusal in the upcoming free agent negotiation period. The players can choose to accept the Hawks’ offers, seek an offer sheet from another club, walk away (as in go play in Europe) or continue negotiating with the Hawks on a new deal. The one-year qualifying offer secures the player’s rights, preventing them from entering the open market unconditionally this coming Friday.
The offers tendered to the abovementioned are such: Read more
TheThirdManIn~Radio returned last night as did a couple of our more popular guests.
Mike Peck, the play-by-play voice of the Rockford IceHogs joined us for the first half hour to recap the IceHogs’ season. Peck sees the IceHogs more than just about anyone not a coach of the team and discussed the progress of Kyle Beach, Brandon Pirri, Shawn Lalonde, Rob Klinkhammer, Igor Makarov, Brian Connelly and more. We also got his early observations of the Hawks’ next crop of prospects Philippe Paradis, David Gilbert and Jimmy Hayes and which veteran defenseman, in his mind, has the greater odds of returning to Rockford.
Al Cimaglia of Sirius/XM Radio and HockeyIndependent.com was along for the Peck discussion as well. We then moved on to talk Hawks-Canucks fallout; whether the series proved the Hawks were anything more than what they showed for the previous 82 games and a few players who are very unlikely to return next season. Al and I also went further into explaining why the Hawks top players, like Duncan Keith, cannot be relied on so mightily again next season. We also debate if the Hawks should re-sign Troy Brouwer, who Stan Bowman seems to love and who he didn’t sound too enthused about last week when the name was brought up.
For the final twenty minutes or so, Superstar and go more in-depth into Duncan Keith’s comments and season confessional post-Game 5; why he shouldn’t have said what he did and the misguided comparisons some have drawn.
It’s a John Scott free podcast. A solid 90 minutes. Hope you enjoy. Thanks to everyone as always for listening.
Click the player below to listen or right-click here to download this show
BlogTalkRadio.com/TheThirdManIn ~ The big catalog of 82
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The show returns next Monday night, May 9th at 8pm central. If we don’t have a special guest we’ll dig into player evaluations and recap losing entirely too much of our money at Arlington Park over the weekend.
Posted in TTMI~Radio
Tagged Al Cimaglia, Alexander Salak, Ben Smith, Blackhawks, Brandon Pirri, Corey Crawford, Cristobal Huet, David Gilbert, Duncan Keith, Evan Brophey, Garnet Exelby, Jake Dowell, Jassen Cullimore, Jimmy Hayes, Kyle Beach, Kyle Hagel, Mike Peck, Niklas Hjalmarsson, Philippe Paradis, Rockford IceHogs, Ryan Stanton, Shawn Lalonde, Troy Brouwer
Searching for hope inside the Blackhawks’ Game 1 and 2 efforts in Vancouver can be like finding a needle in a haystack. More like pouring a glass of milk three days after the expiration date.
Those looking for positives will need to keep their good eye closed.
Corey Crawford has been mostly great, but the Hawks are still in a 0-2 series’ hole coming back to the United Center for Game 3 on Sunday night.
Jonathan Toews, Marian Hossa, Patrick Kane and Patrick Sharp have yet to be heard from in this series. But, neither have Ryan Kesler, Alex Burrows and Mason Raymond. Habitual Hawk-killer Mikael Samuelsson was a late-scratch Friday with the flu and the Sedin twins have flubbed a few prime scoring opportunities they normally wouldn’t.
Words cannot describe how awful Chicago’s blue line has been. Future and former Norris Trophy winners will petition to have Duncan Keith’s name removed from the statue at this point. Brent Seabrook’s pressing too hard and can’t be everywhere. Brian Campbell is the Hawks’ best defenseman five on five and that’s not saying much. He’s been terrible at times too. Chris Campoli at least didn’t do anything too stupid. Nick Leddy simply doesn’t belong.
Niklas Hjalmarsson did something on Friday you don’t see very often at the NHL level. With the Hawks pinned deep in their zone, Hjalmarsson tried to outlet to his defense partner twice in a matter of seconds. Just a minor issue with that though. Neither time did Brian Campbell have a stick. Ben Smith tried to give his stick to Campbell after the second Hjalmarsson pass but the puck was ten feet from Campbell in the Hawks’ right corner and the exchange didn’t happen. The Hawks eventually got the puck out.
For the Hawks, hope is yet a glimmer in a narrowing eyelet.
For those steadfast in denial, the milk is on the table. Read more
Posted in Blackhawks, Game recap, Stanley Cup Playoffs
Tagged Alain Vigneault, Alex Edler, Ben Smith, Blackhawks, Brent Seabrook, Canucks, Chris Campoli, Daniel Sedin, Duncan Keith, Jake Dowell, Jannik Hansen, Joel Quenneville, Jonathan Toews, Marian Hossa, Michael Frolik, Patrick Sharp, Victor Stalberg
On Monday night’s Hockeenight PuckCast, and on our show in the past, we’ve mentioned some Blackhawks’ goal scorer in-detail statistics. The following is a full list of those figures for the Chicago Blackhawks 2010-11 regular season.
Here we take a look at where the Hawks’ goal scorers do their work; statistical data to back up who gets to the net and who doesn’t…. Which Blackhawks need to shoot more and who should keep it in their pocket…. and who has trouble getting their attempts on net.
Goals scored – Average distance from the net (average excludes empty-net goals)
Distance measured in feet (total goals, minus ENG in parenthesis), For players such as Michael Frolik and Jack Skille, only goals scored while with the Blackhawks this season are figured.
Hendry, Jordan – 8.0 – (1)
Johnson, Ryan – 8.0 – (1)
Boynton, Nick – 10.0 – (1)
Dowell, Jake – 11.0 – (4) – detail [7-9-7-21]
Brouwer, Troy – 14.5 – (17) [furthest 31, next was 23ft]
Bolland, Dave – 15.9 – (14) Read more
Posted in Blackhawks, Stat Analysis
Tagged Ben Smith, Brent Seabrook, Brian Campbell, Bryan Bickell, Dave Bolland, Duncan Keith, Jack Skille, Jake Dowell, Jeremy Morin, John Scott, Jonathan Toews, Marian Hossa, Michael Frolik, Nick Leddy, Patrick Kane, Patrick Sharp, Ryan Johnson, Tomas Kopecky, Troy Brouwer, Victor Stalberg
You can put your pencils and notepads down. The only thing left to learn about these 2010-11 Chicago Blackhawks is how bad the “core” wants to win at this point. Too, how far they can drag the dead weight Stan Bowman has anchored to what remains of the 2010 Stanley Cup champs.
One look at Cpt. Scowl-face and the ever-present expression tells the story. This team can’t accomplish much if 50, 19, 10, 88, 2 and 7 aren’t hovering near perfection. Throw Marian Hossa into the mix and you might have something, but those who remember last spring and have paid close attention this season should know better than to count on him.
Brian Campbell has sacrificed some offense to be a little more dependable in his own end. He’s needed to. His partner for most of the season, Niklas Hjalmarsson, has been a mess for the most part. Good luck out East next year Nik. Campbell’s plus-28 rating is second best in the NHL right now. It’s a little misleading since his pairing draws the opposition’s secondary scoring line, but that’s no different than last year and Campbell’s offensive production has remained steady and his defense has improved, while Duncan Keith has gone backwards in both cases.
It’s about time we call a spade for what it is. Outside of the aforementioned, adding Dave Bolland and maybe Troy Brouwer, there’s a bunch of guys in this locker room who should consider themselves lucky to be Blackhawks for the time being. Read more
Posted in Blackhawks
Tagged Brian Campbell, Bryan Bickell, Chris Campoli, Corey Crawford, Dave Bolland, Duncan Keith, Hart Trophy, Jake Dowell, Jonathan Toews, Michael Frolik, Nick Leddy, Niklas Hjalmarsson, Sidney Crosby, Tomas Kopecky, Troy Brouwer
By Rich Lindbloom
Many moons ago, I somehow managed to graduate from St. Anne’s grade school. I’m reminded of this amazing feat due to a scathing review in response to a recent article of mine that was posted on the SecondCityHockey.com website. At first, I thought about replying to my critic, “Cliff Koroll” with a diatribe of my own. However, upon reflection I realized the former #20 car had many valid points. Certainly, my meanderings can no way be construed as contributing anything remotely connected to “insight,” on the Blackhawks.
If it’s insight you’re looking for, Fels, McClure and Killion are a much better option. Actually, if Koroll thinks I’m stupid now, it’s a good thing he didn’t know me before I started reading Chris Block’s in depth analysis on TheThirdManIn website. Chris’s “The Hawks record when various players are in the top five in ice time during a particular game,” obviously will increase your hockey intelligence quotient much more than I could begin to imagine. Personally, I like to take a more “impressionistic” approach to the game. Read more