Recap: Blackhawks blanked 4-0 by Svechnikov, Hurricanes


After eight games, the Blackhawks continue to soul search with a record of 2-4-2.  Nagging issues on the blue line persist and, strangely, Chicago is not getting production from their top six forward group.  Head coach Jeremy Colliton was not pleased with the team’s performance recently and insisted that line combinations aren’t the problem.  Colliton wants the Blackhawks to be a hard working team with and without the puck, but so far other teams are out-working Chicago.

Sitting in 6th place in the Central Division, the Blackhawks now have some work to do on the road. They have been getting mostly stellar goaltending from Corey Crawford and Robin Lehner, but the Hawks can’t seem to prevail in one-goal games.

The Hawks had an opportunity to get back on track Saturday against the Carolina Hurricanes.  Here’s the full recap.

First period

After Chicago’s poor performance against the Flyers on Thursday, Colliton was looking for more work ethic from his team to start the game Saturday.  Almost immediately after puck drop, Corey Crawford was faced with high danger chances.  Andrei Svechnikov found the puck near the side of the net for a shot in close, but Crawford came up with the save.  Brent Seabrook had some issues in the first,  turning the puck over and getting beat by Carolina’s quick forwards such as Sebastian Aho.

But not all was bad.  Although Brandon Saad wasn’t on their line today, Dominik Kubalik and David Kampf continued to be strong on the forecheck, producing good shots on net.  Kirby Dach also showed ability in the transition game, although his strength on the puck in the corners was exposed against big defenseman like Joel Edmundson.

Just five minutes into the first period, Duncan Keith was called for a high sticking minor.  Unfortunately for the Blackhawks, this led to a Svechnikov power play goal.  But just a few minutes later, the Hawks had their turn, when Jake Gardiner tripped Alex Nylander in the Canes zone.  Nothing came of the power play, but the Blackhawks did gain some momentum.  Specifically in the last five minutes, the Hawks had chances from Keith, Alex DeBrincat, and Jonathan Toews, but goaltender Petr Mrazek made all the saves.  The period ended with shots even 12-12 but the Canes up 1-0.

Second Period

The Canes started the second period with a heavy forecheck, forcing the Blackhawks to regroup quite often in their own zone.  Dach had more good looks, especially on one strong drive to the net.  He isn’t like other rookies where they just pass to veteran players.  Dach is legitimately trying to make and finish plays on his own sometimes.

Corey Crawford stood strong making big save after big save through the second.  And even though he started the game on the 4th line, Dylan Strome found himself along on a breakaway only to be stopped by Mrazek..

Midway through the period, Dach had the puck in the corner when Svechnikov laid a huge hit on him.  There was no immediate reaction from the Blackhawks, but after the play Erik Gusfasson gave Svechnikov a crosscheck.  The Blackhawks had one power play in the period that came from a Martin Necas hooking call, but the Canes killed it off.

In the final minute of the period, the Canes were putting on serious pressure in the Hawks zone when Nino Niederreiter scored putting Carolina up 2-0 going into the third.

Third Period

The third period started poorly for the Blackhawks when Dach got called for a holding minor.  The Canes capitalized on a Sebastian Aho setup to a Jordan Staal goal.  At 3-0, even Crawford was trying to get the offense going by passing the puck from behind the goal up ice to his forwards.

The Hawks couldn’t get much going until late in the period when Nylander drew another tripping minor.  But the Canes killed off the Hawks third power play of the day.  Despite being up late in the third period, Carolina continued to put the pedal to the metal: finishing checks, getting the puck in deep, and giving the Blackhawks no room to skate.

With a minute remaining, Svechnikov scored his second goal of the game.  The final score was 4-0 Carolina with the Blackhawks leading in shots 32-31.  It’s important to note that Carolina blocked 20 shots to Chicago’s nine.

What’s Next?

The Blackhawks won’t have much time to forget about this loss.  They get on a plane today and head back to Chicago to face the LA Kings Sunday night.  Today was more of the same with the Blackhawks.  Solid goaltending paired with a lackluster defense and non-existent forwards.

Colliton is doing his best to make this a hard-working team, but the chemistry doesn’t seem to be there.  The Hawks went through something similar last year when they lost several games in a row in the middle of the season.  But with a few really good teams in the central pulling away, it looks like Chicago could be battling uphill for the rest of the year with this kind of start.

Center Ice Forums Recap: Blackhawks blanked 4-0 by Svechnikov, Hurricanes

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