In the end, when I had beer cups all ready to be fired, the Hawks showed more heart and gumption in the 3rd period than they have all season, scored four time in the 3rd period for a 6-3 win over the Predators.
They walked out of this weekend with three of four possible points, and now I don't get to be angry. Sometimes that's a good thing.
The Hawks apparently have come to the conlusion that their 3rd period collapses are, y'know, unacceptable, and were pretty vocal about it in the dressing room during the second intermission. The message took about five minutes to get through, as the artist formerly known as J.P. Dumont scored right off a draw four minutes in.
Then the winds began to howl...
The Hawks were simply all over the Predators after that and the shot totals of 18-5 in that period do it exact justice. Putting four in a period past the hottest goalie in the league takes some doing. And yet, you can't help but be a little flustered that when the Hawks decide, they can roll over an opponent. Anyway, thoughts:
-I feel like I need to be clear because I keep hearing the taunts from my readers in the UC, but no one is happier at the reappearance of Dave Bolland. His second goal -- and that wasn't just some chump he left more naked than The Emperor, that's Ryan Suter who's having one of the better seasons for a d-man around -- just proves what kind of skills he has. I've always thought of him as a 25-goal scorer. I don't want to analyze it any more, I just want him to keep doing what he's done the past 10 games, and we'll all be happy. And that goal was just disgusting.
-Troy Brouwer should score 15-20 goals exactly like his first one every season. He's the only thing resembling a power forward the Hawks have, and he should camp in front of the net more than he does. He is capable of more than that, as his second goal proved. Brouwer is a better skater than he gets credit for, but bunkering down in Crease-ville is what the Hawks need. With his size he should be hard to move, leaving him to bang home rebounds with abandon. Whatever abandon might be.
-Brian Campbell didn't have one of his better games last night -- though this year that's a lofty, Olympus-like standard -- and still had a gorgeous assist, and a +3, leaving him at +23 for the year.
-The penalty kill is unlucky and bad. After deep analytical study, we've concluded this is not a good thing.
-Toews had four shots and a goal. That's what we like to see, good sir.
-The thing that jumps out most from looking at The Boxscore, CORSI, and Shift Charts, is how the Hawks took a crobar to one of the best defensive pairs in the league in Shea Weber and Ryan Suter. They saw equal time agains the top two lines of the Hawks, and were a combined -22 in CORSI. If you can do that to those guys....