CHICAGO, IL - JANUARY 09: Jack Hillen #38 of the New York Islanders passes the puck under pressure from Brian Campbell #51 of the Chicago Blackhawks at the United Center on January 9, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. The Blackhawks defeated the Islanders 5-0. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
It's hard to know what to glean from last night's win, what I do know is that it was a huge relief to finally have a blowout 5-0 win at home to enjoy.
But let's be frank here, it was over not only what was a basement dwelling ogre of a team, but one that was half-injured (literally) and finishing up the last game of a roadtrip. The Isles would have been up against it had they cared, the fact that they pretty much were going through the motions last night made this a laugher.
At this point in the season, I'm supposed to rejoice in the simple gathering of points, and I do to an extent. However, the collection of those points only means something to me if it comes with a team that is building toward becoming better and making noise when things really count in the spring. In that sense, there's been baby steps to the elevator, but that's about it.
But let's be positive, and hope that an easy win fills the 'Hawks with some confidence and swagger they can take into this week where they return to Western Conference play and deal with fellow members of the throng of goofiness that is fighting for playoff spots in the West.
-Marian Hossa was awesome, and I really hope he can do that against an NHL team in the near future.
-There's no need to break down the hidden stats of such an easy game, but Brian Campbell was a +21 in CORSI last night. For the uninitiated, that means the Hawks attempted 21 more shots than the Islanders while Campbell was on the ice. Lets you know where he was pushing the play last night, as he has been all year.
-Jonathan Toews has six shots, which means he was working hard and being a threat. He'll eventually profit from that.
-The last Hawks goal, Niklas Hjalmarsson's, was gorgeous. Sharp, Campbell, and Hossa shared some nifty passes and movement, Hammer moved to the open spot on the ice (take notes, Duncan Keith) and Tomas Kopecky broke out the Tomas Holmstrom act he doesn't break out enough to be useful by getting in front and screening Nathan Lawson, giving him no chance. If Kopecky would do that more often, I'd stop belittling him.