Call of the Wild

Chicago Blackhawks Archives

Gallery 81 - IceHogs Beat Wolves in OT 4-3

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Kris Gray

I feel blessed to be able to combine my love of photgraphy with my love of hockey. Raised in a family that avidly followed the sports of Pro Wrestling, Roller Derby, Nascar and the Chicago Bears.

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Igor Makarov was named #1 Star of the Game for scoring the game winning goal in OT.

It was an exciting time at the Metro Centre in Rockford last night during the game between the Rockford IceHogs and the Chicago Wolves. While it thundered and lightninged outside, there seemed to be a storm raging inside too. Within the first 3 1/2 minutes of the game there was 1 goal scored and 2 fights. The final score for the night was the IceHogs winning in OT 4-3. Referee Shaun Davis handed out a total penalty minutes of 43 for 13 infraction to Rockford and 37 for 14 infraction to Chicago.

 

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Gallery 76 - IceHogs lose to Admirals 3-2

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Kris Gray

I feel blessed to be able to combine my love of photgraphy with my love of hockey. Raised in a family that avidly followed the sports of Pro Wrestling, Roller Derby, Nascar and the Chicago Bears.

 

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In goal for the Rockford IceHogs was Alec Richards on Friday night October 1, 2010.

The Milwaukee Admirals handed the Rockford IceHogs a pre-season Shoot Out loss this past Friday night, October 1st, in Rockford. Photos in the gallery are from that game.

 

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Blackhawks Walk Away From Niemi Talks, Sign Marty Turco to 1 year Deal

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Jane Rickard

I'm nuts just ask anybody.


The news came as a shock to many Blackhawk fans that the Hawks were simply walking away form Stanley Cup winning goalie Antti Niemii and signing 10 year veteran and Marty Turco to a 1 year deal.  


Stan Bowman Blackhawks General Manager stated  that it was "In the best interest of the franchise, for the short term and the long term. You have to have the flexibility  within your roster.The cap situation once again has been well documented here.  This was the best way to approach the team as we prepare for October."   


Antti Niemi is now a free agent able to negotiate with any team in the National Hockey League, Europe or Russia.  Considering that Stanley Cup ring on his signing hand this 26 year old should do well.

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Antti Niemi in his days as a Rockford Icehog. File Photo. Photo Credit:Jane Rickard


Live update from Blackhawk Prospect Camp, Kelly Manke on site at Johnny's West.

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Jane Rickard

I'm nuts just ask anybody.

Ms. Manke reports to ChicagoNow that at the first break of game one of the scrimmage the score is tied Red 1 : White :1.  In goal for for Red is is Joe Palmer who looks much improved this year .  Palmer a native or Utica NY last played for Texas Brahmas in the Central Hockey League.  In net for White is Kent Simpson last of  Evert Silvertips of the Western Hockey League.  Goals were scored by David Gilbert and Kevin Hayes.


At the start of the second frame Jody O'Neil (presently in his third year at Dartmouth College has replaced Joe Palmer in net for Red and Kent Simpson has returned for White. 


Midway through the second period the score is now tied with Atte Ohtamaa getting a penalty shot past Simpson.


At time of first post 12:00 in second period score os White -3 Red 2


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Afternoon Scrimmage at Prospect Camp is loaded with talent, Kyle Beach, Marcus Kruger, Nick Leddy, Jeremey Morin, Drew Leblanc and  Ben Smith.  This group has come from some of the elite American and Canadian programs Kitchener Rangers,  Minnesota's Golden Gophers and St. Cloud State and Boston College.  The competition at this stage is very tight.  Among the 75 or so hopefuls at this camp less than 3-5 most likely will see the NHL. Another 10 will see the Blackhawks affiliate teams.  Others will pick up their bags on Monday after "exit interviews" and head to other camps with similar odds.  However perhaps their skills will be a better "fit" with that teams system.  


4 minutes until game 2.


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Gallery 53 - Hockey Pride

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Steve

The Stanley Cup has been making a number of appearances around Chicago and this weekend, the cup was a part of the Chicago Pride Parade.  Now former Blackhawks defensemen, Brent Sopel escorted the trophy along the parade route in honor of Brendan Burke, son of Maple Leaf's General Manager, Brian Burke.  Brendan was killed in a car accident back in Feburary, three months after coming out to his team at Miami University.  



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Cook County honors Blackhawks; receives a hat

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Patrick Boylan

I write the Wolves blog for ChicagoNow

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The Cook County Board of Commissioners passed a resolution honoring the Chicago Blackhawks for their NHL victory. The Blackhawks sent a single hat in return. Credit: Patrick Boylan


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The cap, it was a nice cap according to commissioners, sent by the Blackhawks after Cook County recognized the team's NHL Championship. Credit: Patrick Boylan

Gallery 51-Chicago Celebrates the Blackhawks It's Stanley Cup Champions

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Jane Rickard

I'm nuts just ask anybody.

Today the city took time to congratulate the Blackhawks, our own Stanley Cup champions.  It was a city party and parade for a downtown team, just what tradition demanded.  Here are some shots of the pandemonium.

Thank you to Kelly Manke a photographer  friend from Rockford who allowed us to use her photos for this gallery.

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Groan for the Day

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Kris Gray

I feel blessed to be able to combine my love of photgraphy with my love of hockey. Raised in a family that avidly followed the sports of Pro Wrestling, Roller Derby, Nascar and the Chicago Bears.

I was sitting in line at my Credit Union drive-thru this afternoon waiting for my transaction to be completed, when I overheard the man in the car next to me call out to the Teller inside...

"How 'bout them Blackhawks!".

Cool, I thought another fellow hockey fan nearby. But, with his next statement, he dashed that thought away when he then asked the Teller...

"Did they win last night?".

Where's the eye roll icon when I need it?

Chicago Blackhawks win Stanley Cup

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Patrick Boylan

I write the Wolves blog for ChicagoNow

A shot from Patrick Kane in overtime ended a successful season for the Chicago Blackhawks as they won game six of the Stanley Cup finals 4-3.

The Conn Smythe trophy should be awarded to Dustin Byfuglien if there is any justice. 

Jonathan Toews takes the Smythe MVP trophy. It is chosen by the hockey writers. There is disagreement among writers whether writers should participate in the voting and then also write about the award.

Toews gets to hold the Stanley Cup first. The first person to get it after him is Marian Hossa..

As you watch this celebration, you should watch to see if the players as they celebrate, involve the fans. Obviously the Hawks are celebrating in an opponents building, but I've seen some teams become very self absorbed in their moment of victory, turning away from the fans and into themselves.

In any case, Chicago, congratulations to the Chicago Blackhawks.

Live blogging game six: Philadelphia Flyers v Chicago Blackhawks

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Patrick Boylan

I write the Wolves blog for ChicagoNow

With all the pregame writing and edge now put away, we are ready to play some hockey!

The Hawks stepped up in Game Five, getting inside the Flyers head, causing the Flyers to make some horrible mistakes. With the Flyers discipline in tatters, the Hawks rolled over them. Dustin Byfuglien played a key roll, first flattening Chris Pronger and then doing what has allowed him to make the unlikely transition from AAA hard-guy to NHL star: getting in the goalies face.

I think continued work on defense and the outstanding offense we saws by the Hawks will be key ingredients of a Hawks victory.

However, this is a championship game and we will see the Flyers step up. Back at home, in the Wachovia Center, they have been very difficult to defeat, as we noted, it has been ten years since a Chicago hockey team left Philadelphia with a win (The Wolves may have done it once or twice since they were swept by the Flyers farm club in the lock-out year).

But I'm not looking up historic records tonight. We have the bald guy freak, Mike "the Neanderthal", Eddie and Doc Emerick on the tube. (My fellow hockey blogger reminds me that I always refer to the two bald commentators, one on WGN and the other on NBC, as the bald freaks. She should also mention, which she won't that I love the Neanderthal. It's a man love thing.)

Let's drop the puck!

OMG Kate Smith? Owwwww..... Dogs are howling, cats are hiding. Children are covering their ears.

This is almost as bad as listening to Jim Cornelison. The Hawks must end this tonight!

FIRST PERIOD----

Eddie O is saying the Flyers are winning the battles along the boards. We'll have to watch that. This is a key to see who is got the hop in the game. Looking at the live stats, the hawks are credited with a lead in SOG, 5/1, so whatever Eddie O is seeing, and he might see things that we don't see on the television, it isn't apparent in the early stats.

There has only been one or two whistles in the first seven minutes, one that I remember, but I also remember an icing. The pace is pretty fast and the teams are not getting a break. It will be training that helps determine the leader if this continues. Finally another whistle with about 12 minutes to play.

We have a delayed penalty, now called (1) against the Flyers. It's a hooking penalty against Chris Pronger. That's a poor penalty to take. That sort of defensive penalty demonstrates something unattractive by the offender: that they can't use their skill to stop the opposition.

Okay, YIKES. They almost had an open goal. DAMN.

Well, the first part of this man advantage was really good looking. The puck dinged off the iron, and that doesn't count as a SOG, but you have to say that it's a sound that's lovely to hear on the Philly sound of the net.

The SOG clock is showing 9/2 in favor of the Hawks. The bald freak is talking to the coach. I'm not hearing anything significant. Nice reporting ol' bald freak.

Damn Braydon Colburn almost did something. It was close. Have i said I'd like to celebrate when his big old nose is smeared across, preferably, three sheets of plexiglass? Not that i want to see him hurt.

The Flyers had an excellent scoring chance about 7.30 remaining. And there was a nice hit on Ville Leino. Leino was slow to get up. They need to keep within the envelope of checks here, taking the man off the play, but not drawing a penalty.

AND the Hawks push too much, taking an interference penalty (1). As we start the power play the SOG clock is at 11/3.

I'm just not seeing the Hawks losing the corner battles that Eddie O says was happening earlier. The SOG indicates a strong momentum in favor of the Hawks. No SOG for the Flyers in that power play. That is not good for the Flyers.

Another penalty (2) in favor of the Hawks by Chris Pronger. Has Pronger melted down here? The SOG clock is set at 14/3 as the penalty begins.

One of the chief jobs of Pronger is to be an agitator for the Flyers, but in that position he is not supposed to be having penalties called on him, he is supposed to irritate the Hawks enough for the Hawks to to draw penalties.

GOAL at 16.49. Dustin Byfuglien comes through with the first goal of the night. A battle against the board, the Hawks moves it around. Byfuglien gathers it in front of the Flyers net and fires it ff the skates of my most favorite Flyers for a goal.

Power play (2) in favor of the Flyers.The SOG clock is now set at 16/3. The Flyers have been very weak on the offense this period. They need to resolve this or they are going to lose the game. PERIOD.

The Flyers have to be very disappointed. I don't believe they have any SOG during this power play. What few shots they have had have been blocked. That is the second power play that the Flyers have not had a single shot on goal during a penalty.

Power Play (3) against the Hawks with about one minute to play. Too bad, too, the hawks were on what looked like a nice transition. To have a penalty called behind the play like that is very disappointing.

GOAL at 19.33. Scott Hartnell scores a power play goal with less than a minute remaining. Hartnell battled for the puck on a rebound to put it in. Some very tough work and you have to hand it to Hartnell who has been somewhat disappointing in this series in my opinion.

At the end of the first period the game is tied 1-1, with the Hawks dominating the period with 17/7 SOG.

SECOND PERIOD---

The Hawks need to play another period of hockey like the first period. I don't care if Philly scored once, the weight of this much momentum is going to overcome the Flyers. At the same time two of the Hawks penalties, particularly the penalty behind the action, was very unfortunate.

More discipline, especially behind the action.

The Flyers need to reverse this. Chris Pronger took both of the teams penalties. He will do whatever he can in one of his rolls as an agitator. What I see is that the on-ice officiating crew is watching Pronger, and reacting to his actions. This wasn't apparent in earlier series.

Pronger needs to pull his horns in. The Flyers have played a relatively disciplined game, losing game five when they lost their discipline. They need to capture the discipline they had getting to this point to win.

Also, there are these things called shots on goal. It wouldn't hurt for the Flyers to get more offensive minded out there.

Okay, let's drop the puck already.

Crap, more ads. Gillette, when you have a shaver that will take care of my back give me a call. For that matter, when you have something for the hair in my ears and nose let me know.

Okay, they are about to drop the puck, nope, Go Daddy! Now an ad for cheap manufactured beer... 

One of the best things about hockey is that once the puck does drop we don't get ads for cars, hawked by bug-eyed reptiles (don't you wish a hawk would pluck his cute little eyes out? It would be so cool!), cheap manufactured beer that alleges that drinking will entice beautiful women to fall all over you or ads for BP where they talk about their stewardship of the earth.

They dropped the puck.

There is a certain freedom in writing about the Hawks. If you've followed the Call of the Wild you know I'm the straightman, I don't usually write about just anything.

Antti Niemi has been a wall, only allowing the one goal. Power Play (3) to the advantage of the Hawks. Michael Leighton isn't looking as tough as he has in other games. But it is difficult to make predictions of wins based on such small things. They add up, perhaps Leighton not being on top of the goal will have an effect which we'll see as the game moves forward.

I didn't register the SOG for the power play. However there was a tough fight in front of the goal and I liked it, noting that Leighton doesn't look as good as he has in previous games.

Doc Emerick just hinted that the Stanley Cup is not yet in the building. I find that very difficult to believe. The guys who are responsible for the Cup are devoted hockey fans. Are we expected to believe they are sitting in some seedy bar watching the game on the television? No, I think the cup is in the building and it makes a theatrical appearance for the television.

GOAL at 8.00. A transition goal for the Flyers as the Hawks defense fails to contain Daniel Briere. 2-1 Flyers.

Power Play (4) in favor of the Hawks. Another penalty (4) against the Hawks. Eddie O is questioning this one. The Flyers hold the puck for 40 seconds. The NBC team is not explaining why this isn't a penalty. But first GOAL at 9.58 as Patrick Sharp scores a 4:4 goal through the five hole.

The Flyers had another power play with no shots, in fact I'm pretty sure the Hawks had at least short handed shots on goal during that power play.

Back to the explanation. Goal tender interference is intended to protect the goalie from offensive actions in the blue area, called the crease, that would interfere with his/her ability to protect the net. So colliding with the goalie would be goal tender interference.

However, I think that the replay demonstrates Hossa collided with Leighton due to the Flyers player running into Hossa. Hossa was playing the puck at the time. We'll get the rules verbiage here in a moment. But essentially Hossa was pushed by the Flyers into Leighton.

Yep, pulled the rules up (they are here: http://www.nhl.com/league/ext/rules/2009-2010_Rule_Book.pdf
If an attacking player has been pushed, shoved, or fouled by a
defending player so as to cause him to come into contact with the
goalkeeper, such contact will not be deemed contact initiated by the
attacking player

So, that's the explanation the television people should have given, for all you newbies.

The SOG clock is now set at 22/9. That means the Flyers have had two SOG this period. The bald freak is noting that one of the reason why the Flyers have stayed in the game is Antti Niemi is giving up important rebounds.

I'm oprimistic at this point. At the beginning of the game I felt the Hawks had a forty percent chance of winning the game and the series tonight. Certainly, the way the Hawks are playing through two periods of hockey, I'm much more optimistic.

GOAL at 2.17 remaining as Niklas Hjalmarsson finds an open lane from high near the point. They believe it was redirected by Andrew Ladd. 

The current score is 3-2.  The people at the rink are reporting that the Flyers are tired. They are fortunate the end of the frame is coming shortly.

Power play (5) to the advantage of the Hawks. I thin another goal here would remove the oxygen from the Wachovia Center.

So with the end of the period, the Hawks have great momentum with a SOG clock of 10/6 in favor of the Hawks. The Hawks have taken a lead of 3-2 and have a man advantage going into the new period.

THIRD PERIOD---

It is a relief to consider that the next live blog I'm likely to write is on the Chicago Force. I feel good. The Flyers were unable to put together what was needed to turn things around in the second frame and at this point I don't think they'll be able to do it in the third frame.

The needs of the two teams are still the same. But if we see another 20 minutes of hockey from the Hawks like what we just saw, there will be a parade in Chicago this weekend.

I keep watching all these ads with people sitting on beahes wondering when that will come to an end? Come to our sandy beach-- bring your haz mat suit.

Ouch!

Okay, we are back, getting close to puck drop.

Almost five minutes into the third frame, the SOG is heavily in favor or the Hawks. The Hawks are dominating the beginning of the period. This looks bad for the Flyers, they haven't been able to break the Hawks momentum.

Doc just noted there have been no SOG to the benefit of the Flyers in ten minutes. This is very bad news for the Flyers.

More hop on the part of the Flyers as we move into the last ten minutes of the frame, but the Hawks are not yet out of gas.

At the mid-way point of the period the Hawks have a 4-1 lead in SOG. The Flyers are putting better pressure on Antti Niemi, but Niemi  and the Hawks defense is working well together at the moment.

About five minutes left. The domination of the Hawks is continuing, but the Flyers are playing with desperation now and there is a lot of energy, energy they found from some deep reservoir deep inside. It is very difficult to put a team down in its own building, and Philly has been outstanding in its building.

Niemi is holding the Flyers back. Twice now, with less than five minutes to play, it is Niemi who has stopped the shot and frozen the puck. 

GOAL at 3.59. The game is tied 3-3 as Ville Lieno brought the puck deep into the zone and Scott Hartnell was able to solve the problem of Niemi with a shot low in the slot. 

DAMN. This game is going to be decided by a final goal, possibly in the last three minutes of the game or in an overtime period.

We are very unlikely to see anything called, unless it the penalty is very obvious. The refs just don't want to be accused of reffing a win for a team in the final.

The Hawks must be getting tired as they've had two icings, now three icings. The Hawks call a time-out. One of the things that happens in an icing is that the team creating an icing is not allowed to make any personnel changes. I'm not sure how long the Hawks have been out there, but they probably haven't had a good line change in a minute or more.

About a minute remains with the score tied. The Hawks just had an opportunity for a line change, no notes from Doc on whether it happened, but we can assume it happened.

The Hawks are playing with desperation now, or perhaps with energy as the fresh guys off the bench are now getting some time on ice. This is a next goal wins situation and I need to put the  Flyers in a better advantage for winning.

The Flyers have been able to keep pace with the Hawks, not surprising as they are playing in their own building. Finally, with about ten minutes to play, the Flyers found energy, perhaps from the desperation of facing a summer of golf.

They found the hop and the energy necessary to tie the game. That is all they had to do in those ten minutes, and they did it. Now the game six hangs in the balance on a mistake.

That's right, a mistake will end the game. Both teams are going to be going about things in a conservative way and the team that makes the next big screw up will lose. 

YIKES!

OVERTIME PERIOD---

The Hawks are celebrating. Patrick Kane shot from the left circle and the puck got stuck in the net. As I mentioned, these OT games are determined by a mistake. It really wasn't really a mistake, Leighton wasn't able to stop the shot.

Congratulations. That is the first Stanley Cup win for the Hawks since 1961.

Roadwatch - Game 5 Blackhawks vs Fliers

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Kris Gray

I feel blessed to be able to combine my love of photgraphy with my love of hockey. Raised in a family that avidly followed the sports of Pro Wrestling, Roller Derby, Nascar and the Chicago Bears.

Close friends and complete strangers in the Rockford area have been gathering together every other night since May 29, 2010 at local Sports Bars to cheer for the Chicago Blackhawks as they take on the Philadelphia Flyers in the Stanley Cup Finals. The majority of the fans can be seen wearing their favorite hockey sweaters and t-shirts supporting the Blackhawks. As time has gone on, the strangers have become familiar faces to each other within the crowded bar area of the Buffalo Wild Wings Restaurant & Bar located on Hwy 173. Faithful fans start gathering as early as 2 hours prior to game time just to get the prime seating in the bar area. Friendships have been forged between the wait staff and the fans there for the games.

The Blackhawks came through on Sunday night, winning 7-4 and now lead the series 3-2. Of all the frequent cheers heard tonight during the game, the loudest cheering occurred when Blackhawk Dustin Byfuglien layed out Flyers' Chris Pronger with a hard hit. Game 6 will be held on June 9th and yes, we will be watching it on the big screens together with our fellow fans at Buffalo Wild Wings. If you're in the area, stop by and join us. 

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Fans react with loud cheers and high fives to Brent Seabrook scoring the first goal for the Blackhawks on Sunday night.

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Cheers sound out after Blackhawks' Kris Versteeg scored a goal.

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A prank was played on a frequent customer by one of the friendly wait staff at Buffalo Wild WIngs.

Live blogging Blackhawks v Flyers game five

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Patrick Boylan

I write the Wolves blog for ChicagoNow

We are live blogging game five. It is a critical game, especially for the Blackhawks. The Chicago Reader notes how sports writers use the term "commanding lead." And that is what will happen to the Flyers, if they have the win.

The Hawks blue line let Annti Niemi hang out there, without protection. Added to this issue is the overconfidence of Niemi, who wasn't aware of the changing situation behind him. Finally, typical at this time of the season, there is a terrific goalie in net for the Flyers.

How does the offense of the Hawks solve the issue of Michael Leighton? The obvious answer: throw pucks at the net. But, I'm not seeing the Hawks use their speed in the transition.

For the Flyers I can only say, keep doing what you're doing. They are avoiding mistakes, avoiding taking penalties and they have played very smart.

Almost game time...

The movement of the players, as they rock on their feet to the national anthem, is one of the moments in the game. I'm not hearing Dock Emerick discuss this much, it happens on every level of the game. It is actually fortunate that fans do not have people like Jim Cornelison belting out off-key versions of the national anthem at every game.  

But that is my opinion. 

The Hawks will have the opportunity to put the last change out tonight, and that includes in the initial faceoff. The starting players for the Flyers are known to the Hawks before the Halwks have to submit their starters.

Generally the starting goalies are known.

Nice move by Dustin Byfuglien forcing a turnover and getting a shot on Leighton. Dustin is going to need some support up there as he isn't the fastest player or the most skilled player. However, his size and all-around skills, plus his ability to post himself off to the side of the net and take advantage of  rebounds is really important.

Penalty (1) against the Flyers. The Flyers were successful in keeping out of the sin bin for much of the first and second period of the previous games. They've been very disciplined, something I doubt many old fans of hockey would believe.

There is nice movement and the Hawks had a few shots on goal in the first 60 seconds of the advantage. The Flyers killed the advantage.

There is nice pressure against Leighton in the first five minutes. Despite the fact the power play failed, there was good pressure. There is a lot of pressure on Leighton, I thought the Hawks had Leighton several times with just twelve minutes or so, but he held them.

As I said, outstanding goaltending.

Penalty (1) against the Hawks. 

I believe the Flyers have scored each game with at least one power play. Emerick just noted that the Flyer power play is 31.1 percent, the best in decades in a Stanley Cup Final. Only one SOG registered by the Flyers.

Penalty (2) against the Flyers. We have already seen a difference in how the Flyers are playing, taking two penalties so far this game.

Power play goal at 7.43. Brent Seabrook gets a feed in the left circle from Kris Versteeg and puts it between Chris Pronger's legs and through the stick side of Michael Leighton.

One of the issues in game three and four was that after the Hawks did score, they found the Flyers responding quickly with a goal of their own. I'm seeing more of Dustin Byfuglien on the initial transition. Yet another delayed call on the flyers, the Hawks put a sixth man on the ice and GOAL at 4.34 as David Bolland picks up a loose puck, bouncing off the boards after Michael Leighton refused a shot to put it off Leighton's skate to bounce in. 2-1 with about four minutes left.

GOAL, during a transition Versteeg drags the puck along the blue line and fires from the high slot and they put another past Leighton's stick side or maybe through the five hole at 18.15. 

The score is 3-0. Lot's of good hop by the Hawks here.

SECOND PERIOD---

The Hawks are putting lots of shots on the goal, 13-7. In the first and second periods of the fourth game you may remember that the Hawks had pretty good momentum, putting more shots on Michael Leighton, but were unable to solve him. I don't see what has worked here, except that I'm seeing Dustin Byfuglien going to the net on the transition more. At least one of the goals was a transition goal, that would be the Versteeg goal.

The other two goals were man advantage goals, though the second wasn't officially a power play goal.

Michael Leighton has been shelled from the net. Replacing him is Brian Boucher.

GOAL! The Flyers find an open net at 0.32. Antti Niemi doesn't cover a stop, it trickles out and Scott Hartnell picks up an easy goal.  3-1.

The Flyers just made a transition attack on Niemi. It was really nice and Niemi barely put a stop to it. This shows one of the reasons you may decide to pull a goalie.

GOAL! The Hawks have scored their first goal on Boudher as Andrew Ladd denied in a blocked shot by Chris Pronger, he feeds it to Patrick Kane who was streaking up on the left. Kane found an open net. Now 4-1 at 3.13.

The Flyers just made a transition attack on Niemi. It was really nice and Niemi barely put a stop to it. This shows one of the reasons you may decide to pull a goalie.

GOAL! The Hawks have scored their first goal on Boudher as Andrew Ladd denied in a blocked shot by Chris Pronger, he feeds it to Patrick Kane who was streaking up on the left. Kane found an open net. Now 4-1 at 3.13.

Power Play (2) against the Flyers. The Flyers gave up a goal on a power play and also a goal on a delayed penalty in the first period. As a Hawks fan I'm charged that the Flyers are making mistakes out there. They have been very disciplined throughout the series.

The Hawks are getting a lot of blocked shots. But this is a disappointing power play for the Hawks with only one shot on goal.

We're moving into the ten minute point of the period. The Hawks held a decisive advantage on the Flyers in the first period, notching 13-7 shots on goal. 

While we're working on that, Power Play (2) against the Hawks.

The Shots on goal for the ten minute mark are 16-16. That means the Hawks only have three shots on goal in this period compared to nine for the Flyers.

Back to the power play, the Hawks are working deep, putting their players close to the puck. That works as the Hawks kill the penalty

Power play (3) against the Flyers as Chris Pronger takes a penalty.Byfuglien gets a quick goal. The Hawks moved it between all five skaters, ending with Dustin Byfuglien right in front of the goal. 15.45, power play goal. It is now 5-2.

That's the end of the second frame. 5-2 score with a SOG of 8 for the Hawks and 10 for the Flyers.

THIRD PERIOD---

The first five minutes of the period look like an effort by the two teams to feel each other out. That's not what's happening, of course. By this time in the sereis, let alone in the game, they know a lot about each other.

I suppose we're seeing the Flyers resigned to not being able to get the momentum I'm a bit confused why there isn't a breakdown in the Flyer discipline. In any case the pace of the game is high.

GOAL! James van Reimsdyk picks up a rebound, scoring at 6.36. That brings the Flyers within 5-3.

The SOG shows a relatively evenly matched ten minutes, 4-3 in favor of Philadelphia. Meantime on the ice, we have a television timeout and a Flyer has gone to ice with a stick. NBC is reporting that there is profuse bleeding on the part of Danny Briere following a high stick from Dunkin Keith on a faceoff. This wasn't called

Immediately following that, Kris Versteeg high sticked Chris Pronger for a power play (3) in favor of the Hawks. The Flyers were only able to get a single shot on goal in the power play. It doesn't look good for the Flyers at this point. Although they are still within range of the Hawks, time is running out, with just seven minutes remaining on the clock.

GOAL! The score moves to 6-3. Patrick Kane moves a transition across the blue line, this turns into a 3:2. Kane feeds it to Patrick Sharp who five holes it at 3.52.

GOAL! I was about to write you could put a fork in them, but Velle Leino works his way through a crowd of Hawks to feed it to Simon Gagne who finds Niemi out of position. It is a two goal game again, 6-4.

EMPTY NET GOAL. Now you can stick a fork in them. Dustin Byfuglien gets a pass and pots it for the seventh goal in favor of the Hawks. Empty net goal at 2.05. 7-4.

You have to give Dustin Byfuglien the number one star of the game. Not only did he have two goals, including the one that put an end to the hopes of the Flyers, he also scored the game winning goal.

It was not Chris Pronger's night. The home team has won every game of the series, but you have to hope that the Hawks don't make this any more exciting than it needs to be. Finish them off, Hawks.

Flyers win 5-3; Series tied 2-2

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Patrick Boylan

I write the Wolves blog for ChicagoNow

The Chicago Blackhawks dropped game four of the Stanley Cup playoffs, allowing the Philadelphia Flyers to tie the series 2-2. The 5-3 loss was marked by flubbed defensive moves and a lack of discipline on the part of the Hawks.

The Blackhawks kept good pressure on the Flyers throughout the game but were unable to solve the problem of Mike Leighton, who stopped 28 shots on goal. Jeff Carter and Mike Richards shown, using their few opportunities to score.

It was another game in which the Flyers put a lie to their name as the Broad Street Bullies, only taking eight minutes of penalties, four in the final period after the game was pretty much in the bag for the team. 

In comparison, the Hawks took 14 minutes of penalties. However it was set of Flyers penalties, giving the Hawks a 5:3 advantage that gave the Hawks their best opportunity to win the game. The action happened mid-way through the final frame, allowing the Hawks to come within one goal of the Flyers.

The Flyers, however, used an empty net advantage in the final minute, Jeff Carter lifting the puck from Duncan Keith and racing in to score the finishing goal with seconds remaining on the clock.

LIVE BLOGGING Hawks game four

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Patrick Boylan

I write the Wolves blog for ChicagoNow

PERIOD ONE---
The I hate Braydon Colburn, game four has already started. I'm a few minutes behind, but will be able to catch up.

Eddie Olczyk and Doc Emerick are in fine form tonight. The other night, watching game three, I was impressed that Eddie determined that a goal had happened and was broadly congratulated by Doc for his great eye. Ummm.... Doc, he waited till he could look at the video, particularly from overhead. That doesn't demonstrate a great eye. Let's leave the superlatives in favor of Eddie for when he actually does use his sharp little eyes.

Two penalties against the Blackhawks with only 4:30 passed. The Chicagoans need to get better at the discipline thing because the Flyers are first not giving them chances to score on a man advantage and second because these come back to bite you.

GOAL! And so it happens, right off the face off from the penalty as Richards steals the puck off the face-off from Nicholas Hjalmarsson behind the Hawks goal and back hands it past Niemi on the glove side (Eddie says it goes between the legs, but I don't have all those replay video screens he has. He seems to have been dropping, but didn't stop quickly enough). Power Pay goal at 4:35 for Mike Richards.

I'm seeing the Hawks get physical in the corner as the play resumes. 

You may be wondering why I'd like to see Braydon Colburn's nose smeared across several pieces of plexi-glass. First, of course, it is a huge nose. Second, this is a first round draft pick who never worked out, who never had the right attitude and never TRIED when he was with the Atlanta organization. I'm remembering the disappointment of watching the man skate for several seasons with the Chicago Wolves.

So, I'm demanding the hockey gods repay Colburn for wasting the fans time in Atlanta and Chicago with some real damage. Nothing permanent, just enough to make him look ugly for the rest of the season.

The Hawks are continuing their attack on the Flyers end. These things sometimes can come back to bite you. It depends on whether the D is involved in the attack.

Let's watch and see what happens.

The first power play of the game against the Flyers and the Hawks get a shot pretty much off the face-off.

You may notice the fans in the stand that stand while everyone else is sitting. How damn annoying is that? How lame. These are the fans who want to see themselves on the jumbotron. The guy I'm looking for is on the left side of the rink near the near face-off circle, standing for no discernable reason, wears a baseball hat.

Congratulations duffus. You got the attention of a blogger in Chicago. Now Sit Down And Shut Up.

The power play is struggling a bit. They are getting some shots on goal, which is really what you look for, but Michael Leighton is doing a great job in goal and you have to give the Flyers special teams unit credit as they've done a great job stopping the Hawks special team.

"Will you cut Ladd a bit of slack?" NO! What type of question is that? How does Ladd look out there? Is there anything more useless than an in game interview? Let's do away with these things.

With about 7:30 remaining, the momentum is in the balance as the two teams are struggling in neutral ice. The earlier push of the Hawks seems to have stalled. Doc is noting that there have been no Flyer shots on goal in nine minutes.

Doc is discussing line changes here. As the home team the Flyers have a number of advantages. One is to make the last change of players on the ice. So the Flyers get to see what players the Blackhawks have on the ice and then respond with a final line change.

The other advantage the Flyers have is on the face off, the Hawks put their sticks down first. This is quickly followed by the Flyers stick and the puck. If the linesman doesn't time this right, the motion of the home team stick is often enough to win the faceoff.

Anyway GOAL! The Flyers have scored an even strength goal. Giroux came around the back of the Chicago net and feathered it over to James Van Riemsdyk standing in the left circle. He put a backhand shot on goal, it was wide. It landed on the stick of Niklas Hjalmarsson, who was standing to the left of the net. Hjalmarsson wasn't able to clear it. He rushed, his shot, not noticing the incoming Matt Carle coming in. Carle picked it up and potted it, no one was home. Even strength goal at 14:48.

This is a disappointing first period for the Hawks. What makes it even more disappointing is that the only two shots on goal between those two goals--- well there wasn't one. The Hawks closed them down on SOG, but the Flyers have scored anyway. It will be interesting to se the Shots total at the end of the period. Yikes!

We can hold Niemi responsible for that first goal, he didn't get down fast enough, missed it on the face-off, whatever. 

GOAL. The Hawks finally solve Leighton as the face-off is won by the Flyers. Colburn, that big-nosed egotist, didn't clear the puck out, feeding it to Scott Hartnell who lost it to Dunkin Keith. Keith fed it to Patrick Sharp at the top of the slot. Colburn has another role to play here too, as his stick redirects the puck past Leighton.

That's a big goal, but it is unfortunately matched with just 36 seconds on the clock. The fourth goal of the period starts with a huge hit on Chris Pronger in the Flyer end. Scott Hartnell comes up with the puck, bringing it down to the left boards. There he feeds it back to Kimmo Timonen high in the slot. He made a quick pass to Claude Giroux. Giroux is standing undefended next to the net and again no one is home as he puts it in.

Where the hell is the D? Another issue here was that Niemi was much too far out of the net with a man behind him. That's a bad error. He has been to cocky and we can assign at least two of the Flyers three goals this period to Niemi.

SECOND PERIOD--- 
Another power play to the Flyers. It really looks like a lack of discipline is hurting the Hawks. The Flyers had only eight shots on goal in the first period and as noted in the first period summary, they went ten minutes or so, actually between goals, without any shots on goal. Add to that the three goals and you can compute that there were only five shots on goal in the period that didn't find twine.
They are dangerous. Emerick just noted that there were two short handed shots on goal in this power play, which the Hawks have successfully closed.
It is strange that I'm having a hard time finding a live score feed, with shots on goal and discussion for the NHL game. This is something I can find fairly easily for the AHL.
The stats available for the NHL are far superior to the stats for the AHL, but they are not as easily found I think.
Leighton just refused a shot. His rebound was pretty dead. I've seen this a lot, but there isn't anyone in the area of the net right now. Ben Eager and Dustin Byfuglien are typically putting themselves infront of the net. Grinders like Eager and Byfuglien do well putting themselves at risk in this area. It's a rough area but can pay big rewards as you can see with the stats Byfuglien has generated in this playoff season.
Finally found a live feed to stats on NHL.com. EXCUSE me for not being familiar with the great NHL site.
There are still a few minutes left before the ten minute mark, but once again the Hawks are leading with shots on goal. Certainly mistakes on defense, Niemi's two errors in net, have contributed to the current two goal deficit of the Blackhawks. One thing we can't fault is the offensive power of the Hawks. 
The game is flowing into the ten minute mark of the period. The Flyers are speeding up the game and putting a lot of energy into an assault on Niemi. It will be interesting to compare the SOG at the ten minute mark. I wouldn't be surprised to see the SOG tied or now in the Flyers favor.
The Flyers were unable to even up the SOG, but picked up three SOG, putting the SOG at 7/5 in favor of the Hawks for the period.
SECOND PERIOD--- 
Another power play to the Flyers. It really looks like a lack of discipline is hurting the Hawks. The Flyers had only eight shots on goal in the first period and as noted in the first period summary, they went ten minutes or so, actually between goals, without any shots on goal. Add to that the three goals and you can compute that there were only five shots on goal in the period that didn't find twine.

They are dangerous. Emerick just noted that there were two short handed shots on goal in this power play, which the Hawks have successfully closed.

It is strange that I'm having a hard time finding a live score feed, with shots on goal and discussion for the NHL game. This is something I can find fairly easily for the AHL.

The stats available for the NHL are far superior to the stats for the AHL, but they are not as easily found I think.

Leighton just refused a shot. His rebound was pretty dead. I've seen this a lot, but there isn't anyone in the area of the net right now. Ben Eager and Dustin Byfuglien are typically putting themselves infront of the net. Grinders like Eager and Byfuglien do well putting themselves at risk in this area. It's a rough area but can pay big rewards as you can see with the stats Byfuglien has generated in this playoff season.

Finally found a live feed to stats on NHL.com. EXCUSE me for not being familiar with the great NHL site.

There are still a few minutes left before the ten minute mark, but once again the Hawks are leading with shots on goal. Certainly mistakes on defense, Niemi's two errors in net, have contributed to the current two goal deficit of the Blackhawks. One thing we can't fault is the offensive power of the Hawks. 

The game is flowing into the ten minute mark of the period. The Flyers are speeding up the game and putting a lot of energy into an assault on Niemi. It will be interesting to compare the SOG at the ten minute mark. I wouldn't be surprised to see the SOG tied or now in the Flyers favor.

The Flyers were unable to even up the SOG, but picked up three SOG, putting the SOG at 7/5 in favor of the Hawks for the period.

With about thirty minutes to play, the adjustments need to be made on the Blackhawks. Niemi cannot be as confident, the Flyers have proven they will take advantage of even quick mistakes to score. Beating Michael Leighton will require patience. Possibly putting more bodies in front of the net, particularly on the transition, will have an effect. But this is a game of patience right now for defeating Leighton.

The D has been weak tonight. Clearing the puck, maybe taking more time, slowing down the game as the Flyers are suddenly using unknown speed. I think these are keyes to putting together a win.

Chicago takes another undisciplined penalty. This is not good. A three goal lead in a Stanley Cup game will be tough to overcome. 

This is the second good kill by the Blackhawks. I do not think there was a single shot on goal! 

Niemi just stopped a Mike Richards breakaway shot, He was a good four or five feet out of the crease, cutting the angle, as they say, on Richards. Richards had played a brilliant bit of skating, picking up a turnover in neutral ice to breakaway. There was a second player to his left, making this a t:1 breakaway.

I submit this is one of Richards issues. He is a bit of a hot dog. Either of two moves here would have pretty much put the game out of reach of the Blackhawks. First, he could have fed a back and forth and the second thing he could have done is roll to his right, pulling Niemi out of the angle.

He didn't and his conceit is keeping the game within reach.

More penalties, a 4:4 situation in the closing minute and change of the period.

The Hawks can take advantage of this with their greater speed. But, with the period ended, the score still notes a two goal lead for the Flyers.

THIRD PERIOD---
This isn't looking good. An early goal is required to get the momentum back on to the Chicago side.

The Flyers have had two transitions that they almost used to gain a three goal advantage. Sometimes when a team is behind, as the Hawks are right now, they put too much into trying. You can see there is too much effort at points like this in the game as the opposing team catches them in the transition.

The pressure is staying on the Flyers, but really, in a strategic sense, the Blackhawks are the ones under pressure here. They need to score, hopefully within by the ten minute mark, but certainly before we move past the five minute mark.

That would leave enough time for a tying mark to be made.

The boxscore shows no SOG for the Blackhawks in the first about five minutes. This is against the evidence of my eyes that the Hawks have put good pressure on the Flyers. Emerick is making the point that the Flyers have blocked 21 shots tonight.

He doesn't yet have the similar numbers for the Hawks. 

GOAL! That is probably the game for the Hawks as at 13:17 the Flyers put one in. A turnover is picked up by Danny Briere. He finds Ville Leino in the right circle. He drags it through the slot to the opposite circle and fires off of the back of Kris Versteeg to redirect in.

Another power play in favor of the Flyers. That makes four by my count.

You can say what you will about poor officiating, the Hawks know what is being called and the Hawks are poorly disciplined this game. They need to stop taking penalties. Easy to say, hard to do.

Let's put a fork in the Hawks tonight. They are done. For the first time in this game the SOG total for the period for a ten minute period is favoring the Flyers.

And Scott Hartnell gives the Hawks a man advantage with about nine minutes to play. Really, the Hawks have to score on this.

A 5:3 man advantage as my favorite Flyer gives the Hawks their biggest chance in the game. If the Hawks blow it the momentum will move very strongly in favor of the Flyers.

GOAL. A power play goal as the puck is deflected off the iron. Jonathon Toews takes a face-off, getting it back to Dunkin Keith. Keith drags it along the blue line, finds Patrick Kane in the right circle, they do a pick, with the puck going back to Keith. His shot finds the iron and redirects in. Nice work by the Hawks having people right off to the side of the net too, in case Michael Leighton redirected the shot. PPG on a 5:3 at about 7:59.

It would be nice to prove me wrong as the Hawks have yet another minute of 5:4 to pick up another goal. Nice movement around the net, but the Flyers are clearing the damn puck well too.

The Flyers successfully kill the penalty and Colburn comes out of the box to steal the puck and almost set up a clean break away.

The "Impact player is Leino," who scored the current game winning goal. This is how it's done, you don't care about the story line, you give these facetious awards and write about the people who score the game winning goal. Boring.

 Well, the Flyers have a big momentum here and the pressure is on Chicago. Whey need to score two and they just scored one. GOAL!

I think the oxygen just left the Wachovia Center. A transition goes Campbell to Toews and the puck trickles in. There is a one goal deficit to overcome. At 4:10 remaining.

Dirty goals can win games. And they change stupid little considerations such as naming the current game winning goal holder, in that case Leino, the impact player of the game when the game isn't yet decided.

At about this point, with about four minutes remaining, the staff of the Flyers is walking around the press box collecting the three stars of the game. Meanwhile the press is on deadlines, trying to get the copy ready, not really knowing who is going to win this game.

Here, I'll name my stars of the game, Colburn, Leighton and umm.... Richards. Of course that nomination of Colburn is a cruel joke based on him taking part in one of the Hawks goals.

DAMN~ Richards is so fast! And Colburn actually stops a possible huge goal with just two minutes remaining after he lost his stick. 

Niemi is trying to go to the bench. There is about 90 seconds left to play.

Empty net with 71 seconds remaining. It is always dangerous to have an empty net while the puck is in your own end.

EMPTY NET GOAL and this game is history. Joe Biden leaves with 24.6 seconds remaining. A faceoff is won, but Jeff Carter lifts the stick of Dunkin Keith, steals the puck and then Carter takes off for the Chicago goal.

There is a final power play for the Hawks, but it is meaningless. The final score is 5-3 with the Flyers tying the series 2-2.

New to hockey: 10 things to know

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Patrick Boylan

I write the Wolves blog for ChicagoNow

Kodoka, SD--- There are a number of things for the perspective late-coming bandwagon climbing hockey fan to know so they don't stand out, looking like a baseball fan, or god forbid, a football fan climbing aboard the Blackhawks bandwagon.

  1. When you purchase your brand new Blackhawks sweater do not tuck it in. Only VERY good looking women can tuck a sweater in. For everyone else, this is a faux pas of the highest rank, marking you as a person without any hockey knowledge. They are sweaters, they are not generally called jerseys. And there have been no-nothing sports columnist who have listed rules of wearing hockey sweaters. Ignore them. You paid good hard money for your jersey and it can have any name or number you like on it. Just don't tuck it in your pants.
  2. It is hockey etiquette that you do not leave your seat at the game when the puck is in play. Do not attempt to find your seat if the puck is in play. You and the 48 oz. drink you crave will have to wait for the whistle.
  3. The game is played in three regulation periods. There are no quarters. There are no halfs.
  4. Zamboni is a brand name, not the generic name for the an ice-surfacing machine used between periods.
  5. The Hanson Brothers were real players. They are composed of the real life Dave Hanson and Steve and Jeff Carlson. If you don't know who I'm referring to, keep your mouth shut about hockey.
  6. There is a great tradition associated with the National Anthem at Blackhawks games. But that doesn't mean that Jim Cornelison knows what key to sing it in.
  7. In Detroit they throw seafood on the ice. Every other city in the league is civilized. Eat your seafood, don't play hockey with it.
  8. The Chicago Wolves are not affiliated with the Chicago Blackhawks. Got it?
  9. It is true that the Stanley Cup:
  • Was left in a snow bank
  • Is credited with helping a conception
  • Was dropped to the bottom of a swimming pool
  • Goes home with the players
  • Has all the names of the winners engraved on it
10. When you buy your new "jersey," read number one again.
Continue reading...

8 Reasons I Love Blackhawk Stanley Cup Hockey

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Jane Rickard

I'm nuts just ask anybody.

It's Hot baby!  There is something wonderful about dressing for the finals, chances it will be 75-80 degrees outside and 65 inside near the ice.  This makes for some creative wardrobe choices under that jersey.  Notice the women, you can tell the experienced fan by her large purse in it will probably be stocked with an extra tee shirt, pashmina,or  possibly a flask with some good Scotch.  Meanwhile the female fan who is there for her first game wearing shorts and a Hawks tee shirt shivering in the cold.  Kindly show here where she can buy another layer to stay warm, a cold, cranky fan is no fun to sit next to.

Wearing your Hawks gear to work days. Wearing a hockey sweater to work? Makes perfect sense to me, especially on game days.


Sitting in the garden on a warm night  eating dinner and watching an away game on the computer.Hockey and Sangria, does it get any better than that?


You never know when you will have a great hockey moment.  Last year I was at one of the Calgary games with my nephew Michael (who surely will get his reward in heaven for taking me to the game rather than a date).  The Hawks had won and after the game I walked into the ladies room behind our section and suddenly the crowded rest room burst into the Hawks goal song. It was pure joyous insanity, you better believe I joined in!.

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Happy Calgary fans before Game 5 at the United Center 2009. Photo Credit: Jane Rickard

























Road tripping and meeting the other fans.  Say what you like about rude fans but Patrick and I have traveled all over the US and Canada both as press and fans and the vast majority of the time we have been treated well by the locals. Years ago we drove to Hamilton Ontario for a game four of a Calder Cup semifinals.  The Wolves were 0-3 and we were greeted by a party at the Copps Coliseum  and a sea of waving brooms.  When the local boosters saw our Wolves colors we were greeted, feed and made welcome. Hamilton remains one of my favorite places to road trip to, great fans, team staff and good memories.


Seeing the old true Hawk fans glow this week.  I have written before about Scot, he is one of the men I work with, he has been greeting me every day by singing "The Mighty Hawks" or asking if I caught his "baby faced assassins " on TV last night.  Scot has been a Blackhawks fan all of his life and to see the grin on his face for the last week has been wonderful.  Scot, your one of the guys they salute at the end of every game, believe it!


Seeing the 19 year old IceHogs mature into NHL players. After seeing much of tonights starting line up their first camps it's  a privilege to see their hard work come to fruition. As fans we are lucky to have a affiliate so close in Rockford. Blackhawk fans should be regulars at the Metro Center to check out the new kids coming up through the ranks.


It's Chicago, it feels like prom night  and everybody is going to the dance!  The lucky  have tickets, the rest of us will be at viewing parties or at home watching the game.  For so many die hard Hawks fans in Chicago this is a dream come true the culmination of years of patient waiting.  Win or lose, the Mighty Hawks made it to the big dance, enjoy.



Gallery 34 - Blackhawks' Antti Niemi - Part 2

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Kris Gray

I feel blessed to be able to combine my love of photgraphy with my love of hockey. Raised in a family that avidly followed the sports of Pro Wrestling, Roller Derby, Nascar and the Chicago Bears.

 

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Taken 3/28/10 at the United Center.

The "Finnish Fortress", as he's affectionately called by his fans, Chicago Blackhawks netminder Antti Niemi, is featured in his 2nd gallery for this blog. 

The majority of the photos were taken last season while Niemi played for the Rockford IceHogs.

 

Gallery sneak peek (25 images):

View the gallery...

Blackhawks visit while IceHogs Win in Shoot Out over Rivermen 2-1

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Kris Gray

I feel blessed to be able to combine my love of photgraphy with my love of hockey. Raised in a family that avidly followed the sports of Pro Wrestling, Roller Derby, Nascar and the Chicago Bears.

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Blackhawks' players Antti Niemi and Kris Versteeg, along with Blackhawks' Assistant Coach Mike Haviland are seen exiting the ice after being introduced to the crowd and dropping the ceremonial puck.

It was a busy night at the MetroCentre in Rockford on Saturday before a sellout crowd of 6151 fans. The IceHogs hosted a few former players and a coach who are now with the Chicago Blackhawks this season. On hand to greet fans and sign autographs were former IceHogs players Kris Versteeg, Troy Brouwer, Colin Fraser, Niklas Hjalmarsson and Antti Niemi. Also appearing with them was Coach  Mike Haviland, from their inaugural season 2007-08 in the American Hockey League. Quite a few fans went home disappointed that they did not get a autograph as the lines were  long despite Blackhawks staying and signing autographs much longer than the advertised times. The ceremonial puck was dropped by Coach Haviland while flanked by Versteeg, Brouwer, Fraser, Hjalmarsson and Niemi. It was a Blackhawks reunion all around at that puck drop, as the Riverman in the group, Danny Richmond, played previously for both the Blackhawks and the IceHogs.

Continue reading...

Gallery X: Antti Niemi, net minder

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Kris Gray

I feel blessed to be able to combine my love of photgraphy with my love of hockey. Raised in a family that avidly followed the sports of Pro Wrestling, Roller Derby, Nascar and the Chicago Bears.

Antti Niemi appears to be having a great season so far as the #2 man defending the crease for the Chicago Blackhawks. Here is an assortment of photos of him taken last season while playing for the Rockford IceHogs.

Gallery sneak peek (24 images):

View the gallery...

Gallery IX-Former Blackhawks' Prospect has NHL Debut

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Kris Gray

I feel blessed to be able to combine my love of photgraphy with my love of hockey. Raised in a family that avidly followed the sports of Pro Wrestling, Roller Derby, Nascar and the Chicago Bears.

Former Blackhawks prospect, net minder Mike Brodeur, made his National Hockey League debut recently on December 19, 2009. Brodeur, 26, was recalled to the Ottawa Senators on a emergency basis back in November after Pascal Leclaire was sidelined by a fractured cheekbone.

Brodeur was a 7th round (211 overall) 2003 NHL Entry Draft pick by the Chicago Blackhawks and played for their affiliate teams from 2004 to 2008.

During his first NHL career start, he made 22 saves against the Minnesota Wild. Ironically, the goal that spoiled his bid for a shutout came from former Blackhawk player, Martin Havlat, at 4:40 of the 3rd frame. Minnesota also was playing with a slight disadvantage, as they lost most of their equipment to a fire to the equipment van parked outside Scotiabank Place. Final score with Ottawa winning, 4:1.

Brodeur made himself a fan favorite during his time with the Rockford IceHogs back in the 2007-08 season. Brodeur mixed it up during a game against the Chicago Wolves when a line brawl broke out on center ice. He left his crease to join in ruckus, easly handling Chicago's Robert Gherson who turtled early into their fight. Rockford fans have a tradition of "booing" the opposing team as their starting lineup is announced before each game. However, fans bucked tradition on February 14, 2009, when Brodeur returned to the MetroCentre, by giving a rousing welcome when his name was announced as the Rochester Americans' starting goalie.

Currently Brodeur is back in net for the American Hockey League Binghamton Senators, having been reassigned by Ottawa.

Gallery sneak peek (13 images):

View the gallery...

Live from the United Center - Hit by Seabrook to Pietrangelo pops glass out

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Kris Gray

I feel blessed to be able to combine my love of photgraphy with my love of hockey. Raised in a family that avidly followed the sports of Pro Wrestling, Roller Derby, Nascar and the Chicago Bears.

Patrick Boylan and Jane Rickard are reporting LIVE right now from the United Center during the Chicago Blackhawks vs St Louis Blues game.  

Apparently Blackhawks' Brent Seabrook hit Blues' Pietrangelo, knocking loose a piece of glass. Patrick caught these pictures of the fans in the stands helping the UC Crew putting the glass back into place.

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Photo credit: Patrick Boylan

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Photo credit: Patrick Boylan.

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Photo credit: Patrick Boylan.

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Photo credit: Patrick Boylan.

 

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