Tag Archives: Steve Montador

Blackhawks Wobble But Don’t Fall To The Jets: Chicago 4, Winnipeg 3

By Jon Fromi

The Chicago Blackhawks overcame a weak effort in the opening minutes of Thursday’s game with visiting Winnipeg. The Blackhawks used four unanswered goals to prevail in the United Center by a score of 4-3. Patrick Kane was the star of the game with a goal and two assists on the night. However, two players making their debut in the Indian head sweater, Daniel Carcillo and Ray Emery, were vital in the besting of the Jets.

Carcillo, who returned after serving a two-game suspension incurred last season, skated well with Kane and Marian Hossa, who accounted for half of Chicago’s goals on the night. Emery was between the pipes in place of Corey Crawford. Like the rest of the squad, he was able to shake off a less than promising start to the contest.

Chicago staked the Jets an early lead with Jim Slater potting two first period goals on redirects. After a giveaway by Jonathan Toews, Johnny Oduya fired a shot on goal that Slater put past Emery at the 4:24 mark to open the scoring. He then tipped in a shot by Ron Hainsey between Emery’s legs three minutes later to send Winnipeg out to a 2-0 lead. Read more »

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Lehtonen’s Big Night Culprit in Blackhawks Opening Night 2-1 Loss

By Jon Fromi

The Chicago Blackhawks fell prey to an outstanding performance in goal by Dallas Stars goalie Kari Lehtonen in the season debut for both teams. The Blackhawks found themselves on the short end of a 2-1 score at the American Airlines Center Friday night.

Lehtonen stopped 37 of Chicago’s 38 shots, overshadowing an impressive night for ‘Hawks goalie Corey Crawford. The visiting Blackhawks had plenty of chances, but a couple of defensive zone misplays would be all it would take to spoil Chicago’s opener.

Neither team would score in the opening period, though it wasn’t for lack of opportunities. Both Crawford and Lehtonen came out in fine form and turned away several big shots. Jamie Benn looked to have a breakaway opportunity early after Duncan Keith couldn’t settle the puck, but Nick Leddy hustled down the ice and prevented Benn from getting of much of a shot. Read more »

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TTMI~Radio, e.92, Sam Fels and Chris Block preview the 2011-12 Chicago Blackhawks

By Chris Block

With Opening Night of the 2011-12 NHL season now a mere days away, we called upon an old friend and colleague on tonight’s edition of TheThirdManIn~Radio to get down to some serious Blackhawk puck chatter.

Sam Fels, writer extraordinaire and editor of The Committed IndianSecondCityHockey.com and blogger at NBCChicago.com’s MadHouse Enforcer joins me to digest the off season and preview this year’s Chicago Blackhawks.

On the show, we discuss, but won’t limit ourselves to….

— Blackhawks’ Opening Night roster
— Updates and status of injured Hawks – Ben Smith, Patrick Sharp & Davey Bolland
— Brandon Saad signs entry-level. Begins season in NHL
— Saad vs Morin
— The mess at the center position
— Kane at Center, Sharp at Wing – For how long though?
— Grading Stan Bowman’s off season. Likes & Dislikes
— Can Dan Carcillo play?
— John Scott in the lineup Opening night?
— Ray Emery ‘wins’ the backup job
— The shake ups and makeup of the new defense corps
— Chris Campoli’s contract stand & new place in Montreal
— Biggest Hawks’ Storylines, Key Players for 2011-12
— Bolland again
— How much longer will Joel Quenneville remain Hawks’ head coach?
— Stan Bowman’s new 3-year contract extension in 2016
— 1st NHL head coach to be fired
— Western conference & Finals picks
— Predictions on Hart, Norris & Selke winners
— the Dallas Stars Ice Girls~!
— Drink beer – Get loaded – this Friday night at The Bottom Lounge with Sam and the boys over at SecondCityHockey.com at their big Opening Night viewing party.

And much… much… more

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ChrisBlock@TheThirdManIn.com

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Season preview: Steve Montador; Versatile new guy upgrades blue line depth

Looking to improve depth and add long sought-after grit to the blue line mix, the Blackhawks acquired veteran utility defenseman Steve Montador over the summer.

Stan Bowman traded for Montador on June 29th and signed him less than 24 hours later.

Acquired prior to free agency from Buffalo for the seventh-round pick Bowman received from the Panthers in exchange for Tomas Kopecky’s negotiating rights, Montador inked a deal with Chicago sixteen hours before he was set to hit the open market.

Chicago will mark the defenseman’s sixth team in the last seven seasons.

Set to earn a whopping $4.6 million this season, Montador is the league’s 28th highest-paid defenseman next to Calgary’s Mark Giordano.  Since his contract is frontloaded, Montador’s cap hit over the next four years sits at a more manageable $2.75M. Read more »

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Solving the Campbell Void

Photo credit

By Brad Gardner

The Blackhawks’ blue line will be without a key contributor now that Brian Campbell will lace his skates in Sunrise, Florida this season. The seismic trade was felt most strongly on the books, where Campbell’s departure opened up over 7 million dollars in cap room. Shockwaves will also be felt on the ice as Chicago’s returning defenders and a trio of new acquisitions will try to replace one of the NHL’s better offensive-defensemen. Read more »

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TTMI~Radio, e.87, Sixty-five minutes Talkin’ Blackhawks with Al Cimaglia

A special-express caffeine-fueled edition of TTMI~Radio this week.  Only thirteen more of these to go now….

Al Cimaglia of Sirius/XM Home Ice and HockeyIndependent.com joined for sixty-five minutes of Hawk Talk.  We did this show two hours earlier and quicker than usual since I had to be out the door for a fantasy football draft tonight.  Great show though, covering a bevy of topics.

After running down all the recent pertinent news, Al and I listen to comments Patrick Kane made to a Toronto radio station last week and give our take on the Hawks’ superstar right winger’s new destination date of recovery.

We also take a look at controversial comments recently made by Mike Cammalleri and the now-retired Dave Scatchard.  Is the NHL’s current concussion care policy good enough? Should their be greater concerns, as Cammalleri hints, at the artificial enhancements players are using to compete and endure the NHL grind and is the current drug testing policy doing the job?

Also, we analyze Marcus Kruger‘s place on this year’s Blackhawks; Jimmy Hayes given the opportunity to train in Lugano over a recent 1st round pick; IceHogs’ roster concerns; what we would have paid Chris Campoli to stay and answers to emails on why two of the greatest goaltenders of all-time, Dominik Hasek and Ed Belfour, were sent packing by Chicago in the early to mid-90s.

All this and probably more I’m forgetting.

TTMI~Radio, e.87 ~ Monday August 29, 2011
original air 6pm Cen ~ Uppers & Downers, Talkin’ Hawks w/Al Cimaglia

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Our entire show archives are up at BlogTalkRadio.com/TheThirdManIn
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Show returns next Tuesday, September 6th at 8pm central when we’re scheduled to be joined by John and Bob of the currently vacationing FifthFeather.com.

ChrisBlock@TheThirdManIn.com

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Campoli keeps hope alive, Makarov release, Salak, Hawks Swedish net prospect and more

As a follow up to Igor Makarov signing with St. Petersburg (KHL), it appears the Blackhawks did execute a contractual release of the one-remaining year on his entry-level deal.  That means Makarov is off the 50-man roster.  In the Russian interview we cited in Friday’s story, Makarov said the Hawks released him and that claim now lines up.  His name has now been removed from the team’s web site.

–All remaining regular season Blackhawks tickets go on sale Monday morning at 10am central via Ticketmaster.  Standing room is now $27.  First seven rows of the top level will cost $72 or $90 (60-72 if your seats are behind netting) depending on the opponent.  To sit eleven rows off the ice on the weekend or against an Original Six or rivalry opponent now costs you $200.  And you thought trading Brian Campbell would save us money….

–Free agent Chris Campoli says he has “a few irons in the fire.” [Toronto Star]

“There is interest,’ Campoli told the Star.  “I have to stay positive.” Read more »

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Blackhawks payroll skyrockets, Rockford signs two to AHL contracts

If, as Rocky Wirtz claims, the Blackhawks are still operating in the red through this past season, the company will have its work cut out for itself this coming year.

As things stand now, the Blackhawks will spend a minimum-projected $77 million on player salaries in 2011-12.  This is about an $8.5 million increase on what was spent in 2010-11, $68.5M.  The Hawks spent $66.0M in 2009-10, including performances bonuses ($4.1M) that went penalized against the Hawks cap the following season.

While the team at this point sits roughly $3M under the $64.3M salary cap ceiling with the roster one player over the 23-man limit, several factors will have the team spending almost $13 million more than the “upper limit.” Read more »

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TTMI~Radio, e.85, Two Years Gone

TheThirdManIn~Radio returns this week to celebrate our show’s 2-year anniversary.  We covered all of the major Blackhawks news topics of the past few weeks.

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BlogTalkRadio.com/TheThirdManIn – Entire show archive
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ChrisBlock@TheThirdManIn.com

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July 1st: A Blackhawks Prospectus

Stan Bowman solidified his repackaged defense corps on Thursday, inking Steve Montador to a 4-year $11 million agreement.  The $2.75M annual cap hit is slightly more than you would have wanted to spend, but the difference isn’t significant enough to debate over.

The Blackhawks had acquired Montador’s rights late Wednesday from Buffalo for the seventh-round draft choice Chicago received from Florida this past Monday when the Hawks sent Tomas Kopecky’s negotiating rights to the Panthers.  Kopecky signed with the Panthers two days later; $12M over 4 years.

Montador, 31, isn’t huge (6-0, 210) but he’s tough and plays with an edge the Hawks lacked on the blue line.  He’s best-suited as a third-pair defenseman on a contender, which the Blackhawks should be again in 2012.  But he will kill penalties and fill time on the power play if need be.  He’s solid all around, but not really above-average at anything in particular.  He gets into trouble when he leans too heavily into the offensive end or in the physical side of his game.  But he makes good reads, a solid first pass and is trustworthy.  Montador also has a big shot the Hawks might use on a second power play unit and he’s adept and willing to patrol the crease on the defensive end. Read more »

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