Game 22: Hawks 3, Wings 5
The Blackhawks peppered Red Wings goalie Jonathan Bernier with shots getting 36 on net, 3 past him for goals, and 20 blocked. Malcolm Subban was decent in net but got little defensive help.
The 5-3 loss was the second of its kind in the past week after the Hawks never lost by more than a goal in the prior 15 games. Subban's 5 goals against were the most since the season opener.
The starting lineup was the same as Thursday night's match in Columbus when Subban blanked the Blue Jackets:
And the starters for the opening shift:
1st Goal: Ryan (0-1)
Nikita Zadorov missed a check against the wall to hinder Robby Fabbri. As Pius Suter chased Fabbri, Connor Murphy got caught puck watching which prevented him from picking up Bobby Ryan.
2nd Goal: DeBrincat (1-1)
Calvin de Haan banked the puck off the boards for a stretch pass that found Alex DeBrincat coming in for a change at the offensive blueline. DeBrincat sent the puck over Bernier's shoulder.
3rd Goal: Helm (1-2)
Suter should have stayed net front as Duncan Keith and Ian Mitchell were already below the goal line which let Luke Glendening connect with Darren Helm all alone in the left circle for an easy marker.
4th Goal: Djoos (1-3) PP
Christian Djoos scored the Wings first power play goal in 14 games (0-for-38). Djoos streaked up the middle from the blueline to receive Fabbri's pass and score from between the circles.
5th Goal: Svechnikov (1-4)
Evgeny Svechnikov intercepted Ryan Carpenter's pass which started a flurry around the Wings net. The puck eventually got back to him and he stuffed it home opposite of where Subban was stationed.
6th Goal: Janmark (2-4)
Amidst a passing play below the offensive blueline by Adam Boqvist and Carl Soderberg, Mattias Janmark drove the middle splitting the defense and redirected a feed between the wickets to beat Bernier.
7th Goal: Nielsen (2-5)
Zadorov and Murphy did their part to try containing Svechnikov and Frans Nielsen who had sub-optimal conditions to make plays but they got enough as Subban simply let the puck squeeze by him.
8th Goal: Kubalik (3-5)
Dominik Kubalik received a drop pass from Brandon Hagel then airmailed the puck that hit the top of the glass behind the net and landed in the slot for him to backhand into an open cage.
The Hawks gave each other outlets and made crisp feeds at the start of each period but the passing game degraded and unraveled into sloppiness as time ticked away. A full 60 has been elusive.
Boqvist played a solid game skating fluidly and making passes. Letting him dance even if he gets stymied builds his confidence. It also helps that his stick is on the ice than up by his waist.
Keith was by far the Hawks best blueliner as he turned in an excellent defensive effort with his trademark stickchecking in addition to clearing the crease and flipping the ice.
Calvin de Haan
de Haan's passing has been generally subpar often missing his target. He needs to focus more on going shorter as he tends to prefer stretch passes to teammates who are already under pressure.
Soderberg remains hot with an assist to pick up a point in 4 straight games. He's feeling the flow now on offense creating chances to go along with his always solid defense.
Janmark is just a bulldog on the ice using his big frame to get to where he needs to be. He had 5 shots on the night plus his goal while also remaining defensively reliable like Soderberg.
Continuing to ramp up his play after a previously mediocre stretch has been Matthew Highmore. He's been a tenacious forechecker as part of a surging 4th line with Carpenter and David Kampf.
Collin Delia got lit up for 6 goals as the Monsters doubled up the IceHogs in a 6-3 victory. Reese Johnson, Nicolas Beaudin, and Wyatt Kalynuk also started after being reassigned to the Hogs.
1st Goal: Lappin (0-1)
After Delia played without a stick that broke earlier in the shift, Nick Lappin cleanly beat him as he was leaning to his right but the puck went left. There was also no screen on the play either.
2nd Goal: Gallant (0-2)
Brett Gallant zoomed by 3 defenders who were bunched up in the upper circles without covering anyone in particular. He received a pass from Carson Meyer and ripped a shot upstairs on Delia.
3rd Goal: Entwistle (1-2)
After Kalynuk sent a D-to-D pass to Cody Franson, Matiss Kivlenieks made an initial save on Franson's shot but MacKenzie Entwistle fought for inside positioning and got free to jam home the rebound.
4th Goal: Jordan (1-3)
Taking a stretch pass from Evan Polei, Zach Jordan came out of the penalty box with Beaudin in pursuit and beat Delia with an in-stride snapshot from the lower right circle.
5th Goal: Sikura (1-4)
Connor McDonald fired a point shot that hit Delia who tried to smother it with his glove but Tyler Sikura jabbed at it several times and finally buried one into the twine.
6th Goal: Chalupa (2-4)
Dylan McLaughlin obtained a pass at center ice from Kalynuk and glided his way up the left flank and cut to the middle leaving the puck for Matej Chalupa to deposit into the net.
7th Goal: Fix-Wolansky (2-5) PP
The Monsters scored within 8 seconds of the power play beginning as Trey Fix-Wolansky one timed the puck home after a quick passing sequence resulting from a Cleveland faceoff win.
8th Goal: Regula (3-5)
On a delayed call that would've sent the Hogs to the power play, Alec Regula danced from the offensive blueline in a curved path down the right side to rifle a shot from the lower right circle.
9th Goal: Fix-Wolansky (3-6) PP
Fix-Wolansky scored his second power play goal of the period after the Hogs inadvertently overloaded the right side which left him all alone on the left side for an easy tally.
Delia needs to stop playing the puck as nothing positive comes out of it resulting in either a direct turnover or a 50/50 puck.
Beaudin still needs to close the gap more rather than be a sticks-length apart as he's mirroring an opponent.
Kalynuk has the wheels to escape trouble in his end and clear the zone himself. He cradles the puck so well to protect it in his carries.
The line of Andrei Altybarmakian, Evan Barratt, and Tim Soderlund is really fun to watch. They're dangerous on the forecheck with their feisty relentlessness, grit, and sandpaper.
Altybarmakian and Soderlund have speed to burn and shiftiness to evade yet annoy the other team as they love playing in traffic.
McLaughlin is very smooth in his puckhandling and deceptively quick to maneuver around defenders as he creates scoring chances.
See you on the boards!