Two Formal Rivals Heading in Different Directions
A game between two formal rivals. Blackhawks vs Canucks was a game of two teams going in different directions. While Chicago came in 12th in the Western Conference Vancouver was at the other end. Sitting 3rd in the conference and 2nd in the Pacific division. The Canucks were clearly the hotter team coming into tonight's game.
The Canucks came in 9-3-3 on the year with points in 8 straight games. Chicago had only 2 wins in the last 9 games. Something they could be happy about Thursday night Blackhawks Vs Canucks. They had a 3-3-2 record at home and the "Mad House on Madison" wasn't a happy place for Vancouver to play.
The rivalry might have ended for both teams. Vancouver has Edler from those days. And While Chicago still had Patrick Kane, Jonathon Toews, Duncan Keith, and Brent Seabrook. The core of their roster was now made up of younger players. Besides Kane the leading scorers for Chicago with 4 goals and 9 assists for 13 points. The rest of the leaders were all 22 or under. Alex DeBrincat, Dylan Strome and Alex Nylander were trying to find their way on a very mixed team.
The Canucks were in good form and looking to feast off a bottom team in the west. Vancouver sent their number one Goaltender Jacob Markstrom between the pipes. While the Blackhawks Vs Canucks went with Corey Crawford. Markstrom had points in all his previous starts against the Hawks going 4-0-4.
Blackhawks Vs Canucks 1st Period Owned By The Home Team
The first period in the Blackhawks Vs Canucks had a nice pace to start. Both teams were rolling four lines and playing back and forth in each other's end. No real chances for either team through the first 5 minutes but also not many whistles. Chicago was getting the better of the shots.
After a give away by Adam Gaudette the Blackhawks Vs Canucks came back the other way. What started off as a harmless rush by Kane. He was able to find Strome who got it into Vancouver's zone to DeBrincat who fired a beauty over Markstrom to take the 1-0 lead.
— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) November 8, 2019
Jake Virtanen shortly after took a slashing penalty at 7:41 and the Blackhawks Vs Canucks could add more. Luckily for Vancouver, they were able to kill that one-off. Chicago was controlling the play and should have been up 2-0 if it wasn't for a block by Troy Stetcher that saved a sure goal.
Both teams were happy going dump and chase and not really controlling in the other teams' zone. Vancouver was able to get the shots a bit more even before J.T. Miller took a hooking penalty. It didn't take long for the home team to score. A Face-off win and quick play from Kane to Strome to Shaw in the slot and it was 2-0 going into the second.
The Second Period, Was Blackhawks Vs Canucks Going To Get Interesting?
The Blackhawks Vs Canucks were tied up in shots going into the second but not in goals. 2-0 for Chicago but Vancouver had got a late Powerplay in the second period which carried over. Toews was in the box for slashing and this was as good a chance as any to get back into the game.
Get back in the game they did! After a bit of control, Captian Bo Horvat was able to get it down low to Elias Pettersson who waited, and waited, and then just banked it off J.T. Miller for the powerplay goal. Just like that it was only 2-1 Blackhawks Vs Canucks with lots of time left in the second.
— Joshua (@JoshuaGriffith0) November 8, 2019
It looked like the momentum would continue in Vancouvers Favor after a penalty to Boqvist for Tripping but it didn't last. Miller took an interference penalty right off the won face off and we were in for some 4 on 4. Again the refs put the whistles away and we got to see some exciting hockey. Both teams had chances Blackhawks Vs Canucks and both teams had goalies equally ready for the task.
Some questionable calls on both teams to end the second half of the period. Pettersson got his first Minor of the year after taking a couple of shots and giving a slash back to Zach Smith. It was a frustrating period for the away side in Blackhawks Vs Canucks. Outshooting the home team 12-10 in the period but getting no puck luck or calls. They also looked like the team who had played in a different timezone on Tuesday, flew out and played tonight.
It was a tough period and a tough stretch coming up so hopefully, we would see some fight back. Canucks fans were used to it by now. We haven't been out of any game yet.
A Less Than Exciting 3rd Period Blackhawks Vs Canucks
With a chance to come out in the final period and show what they have all year. The Blackhawks were very determined to not let that happen. What was a free moving first two periods became a clunky whistled 3rd. A lot of Neutral Zone play and some positive time in the Chicago end by the Lotto line but nothing could really be sustained.
The Blackhawks had a chance to make it 3-1 when a silly challenge for the puck by Markstrom left him way out of position. Toews had an open net but was cut off by several Canuck defenders. The best chance came on a crossbar for Chicago in the rush but they couldn't do anything in the first 12 minutes either. After a first and second period shooting gallery, the Blackhawks vs Canucks slowed it down.
Shots were 29-27 Vancouver after 2. they managed a combined 19 in the 3rd period. Chicago was happy slowing things down clogging up the zone. While Vancouver's top lines looked good again tonight they couldn't beat Crawford. Eventually on the powerplay, where they ended 2/6 on the night. The Blackhawks were able to get the all-important 3-1 goal at 14:54. The same people again on this one, Kane with the goal from Duncan Keith and Strome.
It didn't look to be the Canucks night. A late Powerplay where they decided to pull the goalie for the 6-4 advantage led to a quick goal for Chicago. 4-1 Blackhawks Vs Canucks, A couple more late garbage goals. One by Jake Virtanen which he will take, his 5th of the year. And then another empty net by the Blackhawks Brandon Saad and this game was definitely going to be Saad for the away Fans. Pardon the pun.
Chicago Can Move Forward And Vancouver Can Learn
Two teams at different ends of the NHL Western Conference standings. Both teams in Blackhawks Vs Vancouver can take a lot of things from the game. Chicago can start to move forward with their young team and group of vets and look to do what they did at the end of last season. Make a push towards the playoffs. Patrick Kane had 3 more points to add to his already team-leading 13 points. The scariest thing with this team is that Toews hasn't even gotten going yet.
The Blackhawks will look to continue on tonight's game when they head to play the Pittsburgh Penguins and Sidney Crosby Saturday night. This would be a good time for them to start playing good hockey, A win on the road Vs the Penguins would go along way.
For the losing team Blackhawks Vs Canuck. Vancouver continues on its mini 2 game road trip tomorrow night. It won't get any easier as they head to the frozen tundra of Winnipeg to play the Jet's. A team only 4 points back in the West standings and wanting to prove they are still a Stanley Cup contender despite what has happened in the offseason.
This might have been the first game in 16 that Vancouver was outplayed. It should give fans some happiness as the Canucks were still in the game. Execute on the powerplay that went only 1/4 and the game could have been different. Markstrom played well despite giving up 3 goals. However, you felt about the Blackhawks vs Vancouver game it doesn't matter anymore. Tomorrow we play again!