Time to start the thread that only myself, bman, thelostverse, Steve8 and sunnylea57 will post in regularly. 

The Blackhawks have plenty of scoring punch. I’m hopeful that the addition of some defensive-leaning blueliners will help what was a pitiful defense the last couple of seasons. Maybe Brent Seabrook will follow whatever regimen that brought Jonathan Toews back from the dead last year. Lehner is a great addition at goal. Hopefully he can maintain his performance level of last year; this obviously depends a bit on the team improving on the back end. If so, I can see the team extending him with Crawford hopefully deciding to retire after this campaign. I’d hate to see him risk any more concussions. The return of Andrew Shaw adds some grit that has been missing, but at the risk/expense of a lot of dumb penalties. 

Original Post

I'm ignoring this post.

 

But seriously, I am cautiously optimistic about this season.  I believe the top two lines will score, but will there be any depth scoring from the 3rd or 4th lines?  The potential is there certainly for the third line. but only time will tell.

As Bill said, the defense is the key.  I think Lehner was a huge pick-up based on injury history with Crawford.  de Haan and Murphy are supposed to be the shutdown pair, but I don't think they've even played a game together yet.  If they work out, and that is a big but, that would allow Keith and Seabrook to be slotted properly in the 2nd and 3rd pairings. 

Finally, I'm hoping we see Kirby Dach get into a few games before they ultimately send him back to his Junior team.  I think the concussion in the prospects tournament made the decision easier as he wasn't able to get on the ice and possibly explode onto the scene.  Give him a few games, send him back to Juniors to grow, and then see what he can do next year after another year of experience.  Keeping his contract for an additional year is an added bonus.

I'm going out on a limb here and saying the Hawks get back into the playoffs this season.  It would help if they played in just about any other division, but there is just too many excellent pieces up front and in net to miss.  Of course, I say that every year...

Drop the puck.

Go, Canucks!

 The odds makers don’t seem to have very much faith in the Canucks’ ability to win the 2020 Stanley Cup. Under the circumstances, I think the smart thing for me to do would be to invest all of my bitcoin money in a huge bet on this wonderfully unpredictable team. I bet on them back in ‘82 and lost, but I think I will get my money back after this season. 🙏

Bruins win 3 of 4 on a west coast road trip to start the season. Enjoy the Cup while you have it St. Louis.

I see the Leafs have picked up right where they left off defensively from the end of last season.

0-2 for the Hawks.  Scoring isn't the problem, but they can't keep the puck out of their own net.  You score 4 goals in a game, you should win.  Ouch.

I know it's early in the season but it's interesting how well the Oilers are playing now they are rid of that POS Chiarelli as their GM.

Even more interesting is something I just learned, that same POS is working as a consultant for the St. Louis Blues. I guess they don't want to repeat as champions.

The two “star” defensemen of the teal guppies are -11 and -13. At -5, I’m hating Brent Seabrook and his contract a little less. EK makes over $4 mil more per year. For a lot longer. 

billhike posted:

The two “star” defensemen of the teal guppies are -11 and -13. At -5, I’m hating Brent Seabrook and his contract a little less. EK makes over $4 mil more per year. For a lot longer. 

Of course then the Blackhawks shit the bed against them.

billhike posted:
billhike posted:

The two “star” defensemen of the teal guppies are -11 and -13. At -5, I’m hating Brent Seabrook and his contract a little less. EK makes over $4 mil more per year. For a lot longer. 

Of course then the Blackhawks shit the bed against them.

The Hawks had a lot of bad puck luck last night defensively, and they compounded that with an offense that looked inept and disinterested for 57 minutes.  Then they scored two goals in a 1:08 span and are surprised the last three minutes of the game weren't enough. 

I'm still cautiously optimistic at this point, but I'd be leaning on Lehner more than Crawford right now.  Although, Crawford looked really good after he came back from the concussion protocol evaluation in the game against the Kings Saturday night. 

We tried like hell to blow his one tonight. Thankfully the opponent was the Leafs, without Marner. Lehner was mostly excellent again, with the “defense” allowing 57 shots in a regulation game. 

Last edited by billhike

Saw some of the Panthers come back from 4-0 to be the Bruins  in a shootout.  Biggest comeback in team history and hard to believe they are the same Panthers I have watched flail around for years

jcocktosten posted:

Saw some of the Panthers come back from 4-0 to be the Bruins  in a shootout.  Biggest comeback in team history and hard to believe they are the same Panthers I have watched flail around for years

Coach Q! 
If Bobrovsky starts playing like his old self, it will be a fun season for them.

Don't look now, but the Hawks are 4-1-1 in their last six games.  Having the tag team of Crawford and Lehner between the pipes certainly helps. 

No comments from the Leafs fans on the firing of Babcock?

And how about that save Rask made last night against the Sabres late in the 3rd period?

The regular season is just too damn long.

The Bruins are doing well, with flashes of inconsistency. How do you lose to the Kings at home one week and then take the Capitals apart the next?

There are always a couple of throwaway games during the course of a season for the really good teams. Conversely, teams in their current state like the Blackhawks occasionally eke out a win over someone decent.

My son was home from Africa for Christmas and we finally got to watch a Hawks game together for the first time in a couple of years.  We watched the Islander game and it was a good Hawks win. 

It was a nice win against the Blue Jackets yesterday as well (at least the third period anyway), and I think Lehner is showing that he should be the goalie the Hawks keep going forward next season.  I'm a huge Crawford fan, but his injury history is too big a liability for future. 

billhike posted:

Added bonus was an entertaining and somewhat justified post-game Torts rant. 

Post game Torts rants are must see TV. 

The Bruins lost an OT/shootout for the 12th time already this season the other night.  That's 4 more than the next most of Columbus with 8. Marchand decided to just kiss the puck with his stick as he skated by to take his penalty shot putting the cap on a Flyer comeback. WTF? Too many dropped points.

steve8 posted:

The Bruins lost an OT/shootout for the 12th time already this season the other night.  That's 4 more than the next most of Columbus with 8. Marchand decided to just  kiss lick the puck with his stick as he skated by to take his penalty shot putting the cap on a Flyer comeback. WTF? Too many dropped points.

FIFY 

What's up with the Golden Knights firing Gerard Gallant?  There must be more to this story - Vegas is only three points out of the division lead and tied for the second wild card spot.  And to hire DeBoer, who was himself just fired by San Jose last month?  Somebody pissed someone higher up on the food chain in Vegas...

thelostverse posted:

What's up with the Golden Knights firing Gerard Gallant?  There must be more to this story - Vegas is only three points out of the division lead and tied for the second wild card spot.  And to hire DeBoer, who was himself just fired by San Jose last month?  Somebody pissed someone higher up on the food chain in Vegas...

I’m very surprised as well. If there doesn’t end up being any dirt/stink behind the move, I wouldn’t mind the Blackhawks considering him. But I don’t think they would. Stan doesn’t want anyone around that could beat him up without breaking a sweat.

billhike posted:
thelostverse posted:

What's up with the Golden Knights firing Gerard Gallant?  There must be more to this story - Vegas is only three points out of the division lead and tied for the second wild card spot.  And to hire DeBoer, who was himself just fired by San Jose last month?  Somebody pissed someone higher up on the food chain in Vegas...

I’m very surprised as well. If there doesn’t end up being any dirt/stink behind the move, I wouldn’t mind the Blackhawks considering him. But I don’t think they would. Stan doesn’t want anyone around that could beat him up without breaking a sweat.

I like what Coliton is doing with the Hawks right now and have no interest in Gallant. 

billhike posted:

Congrats to Patrick Kane on reaching 1,000 points.

A pretty special moment for him, especially when the whole team came on the ice to celebrate with him.  Typical Toews thinking ahead and checking with the refs before the game to make sure it would be allowed. 

The Canucks are finally for real, a couple great add-one in February and they could make waves in the playoffs. And Chicago will be there, quite impressive as of late.

Poor start to an incredibly important road trip for the Blackhawks. Kirby Dach needs to watch the next game from a locker room TV.

Bruins heading for the President's Cup. Cue up the comments about the PC winners never win the Stanley Cup.

steve8 posted:

Bruins heading for the President's Cup. Cue up the comments about the PC winners never win the Stanley Cup.

2013 Blackhawks did it. Recall the Finals opponent? 

Hey maybe this year could be a rematch? Oh wait, nevermind...  Unless the Quenneville led Panthers make it?

steve8 posted:

Hey maybe this year could be a rematch? Oh wait, nevermind...  Unless the Quenneville led Panthers make it?

I can live with other sports being suspended/canceled, but if this goes on and there aren’t NHL playoffs, major bummer for me. 

I'm hoping they will be able to restart in a few weeks with regular season finished as it stands and an abbreviated playoff. Best of 5 in the first two rounds.

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