Blackhawks 5, Canucks 1: Hawks show no sympathy
BY ADAM L. JAHNS email@example.com November 16, 2011 10:02PM
Chicago Blackhawks center Marcus Kruger (16) and Steve Montador (5) celebrate teammate Andrew Brunette's goal past Vancouver Canucks goalie Cory Schneider (35) during second -period NHL hockey game action at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2011. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jonathan Hayward)
Updated: December 18, 2011 5:27PM
VANCOUVER, British Columbia – There weren’t many of the typical post-whistle fireworks usually associated with the Blackhawks rivalry with the Vancouver Canucks.
But don’t be fooled. In the end, the Hawks did put a pounding on the Canucks at Rogers Arena Wednesday night. Coach Joel Quenneville felt so satisfied with their 5-1 romp of the Canucks that he called it “a complete team win.”
“We did a lot of good things in all areas of our game that we were pleased with,” Quenneville said. “We had an excellent third period. We stayed out of the box. Our power play was good. [Corey Crawford] was good.”
Quenneville basically wrapped up what the Hawks did in one sentence.
The power play is no longer a concern for them. Instead, it’s now a concern for other teams. The Hawks’ power play went 2-for-3, giving them a much-needed lift after falling behind in the second period. Both power-play units produced as Andrew Brunette scored after nice passing sequence by Marcus Kruger and Steve Montador, and Patrick Kane scored on their second opportunity with the advantage.
On the other hand, Canucks coach Alain Vigneault was sour after the loss, especially considering that his team didn’t have a power play all game.
“We just played much smarter,” Jonathan Toews said. “We did give up scoring chances, but not too many of them. ... When we did get in trouble, we were just being smart and not making it worse than it was.”
Toews made things worse for the Canucks with a goal and an assist. Kane and Montador also finished with a goal and an assist. Marian Hossa was his usual productive self with three assists, while Patrick Sharp also had a goal.
Crawford benefited from some luck as Ryan Kesler and others failed to capitalize on prime scoring chances. But for the most part, he had a solid game, turning away 28 of 29 shots.
The Hawks were able to avenge their 6-2 loss to the Canucks at the United Center earlier this month. Unlike that game, the Hawks succeeded on the power play and didn’t get baited into penalty trouble against the hated Canucks.
“We wanted to play better that’s for sure,” Sharp said. “We were upset about the loss, and it sucks to lose to the Canucks as well, but it wasn’t anything we were thinking about for weeks. Our focus has been on playing good hockey.”
Mission accomplished, then.
The Hawks’ rout definitely puts a damper on the positives the Canucks said they had going for themselves after winning 3 of 4 heading into Wednesday’s game.
Jannik Hansen scored the Canucks’ lone goal 38 seconds into the second, while Cory Schneider got the nod for an injured Roberto Luongo and stopped just 22 shots while looking particularly porous in the third when the Hawks scored three times.
Center Dave Bolland was back in the lineup after missing three games with a foot injury and eventually got the assignment against Henrik and Daniel Sedin. His return definitely helped, especially with defenseman Brent Seabrook out with a leg injury.
“It’s a good way to start this road trip with a win,” Sharp said. “Hopefully, we continue that momentum.”