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Vancouver Canucks vs Chicago Blackhawks Game 2
by Colin Van Osch (NHL)
Posted on May 2, 2009, 7:01 PM

Quick go, true believers

Vancouver is ahead. Some really bad penalty calls in this game so far. The Demitra penalty was an absurd make up call for all the penalties Chicago had to unsuccessfully kill, and if there's a rule that is dumber than the puck over the glass, it's that you can't smack a stick anymore without getting a slashing call. I saw a stick blow up on a pass in this game, and all of a sudden a stick breaking is an appropriate barometer for penalization? Poor form.

Even game tonight, much more than the score suggests. Chicago is playing well but you have to believe they're deflated from how those penalty kills went.

Period 2 is over. Chicago is dominating and the referees have really evened out the calls now, so hopefully the third period is called correctly. Sharp has been a monster. The Byfuglien call where he bowled over Luongo is just absurd, not only is it not hooking but it's blatant goatender interference. Anyways, coming into the third, the penalty calling has been inconsistent, Luongo made one sick save and then was embarrassed by Bolland with a sweet headfake, and Chicago is really looking like a great team.

One side note I would like to point on the Hawks. It happened last game and it happened again tonight with a less detrimental result. They work hard and take chances to get ahead, or get even, and then they don't adjust to being in a good position and take too many chances. Last game, Salo beat them, this game they got caught again and it led to a breakaway. Then, the second part, much like the Salo goal last game, is that they return to the zone comepletely scrambled and no one grabs their assignment. This needs to be addressed soon, because Chicago cannot be making these mistakes any more.

3rd period ahead.

Well, you've seen the game, you know the end. 6-3 after an empty netter by Burish. Let's touch on the quick points, because I only think there is 2 more things to say about this game.

1) Vancouver was only involved when they had the man advantage. They looked disorganized and missed assignments left and right otherwise. I don't know what is going on with them, but a better team than has showed up the last 2 games had better show up or Vancouver is going to be making a hasty exit from this series. They can't make things happen with 1-and-out rushes.

2) Nikolai Khabibulin played much better than his numbers indicate. Letting in 2 goals on 5-on-3 powerplays is not something you can blame on him. He has performed well on Vancouvers quick rushes and hasn't given up any real second chances.

Anyways, I was really unimpressed by the play of Vancouver in this game, all game. Wasn't impressed by the first 2 lines, Sundin was a ghost, the goaltender was subpar. Needs to be better than they were in Game 2. They also need to be better than they were in Game 1. I don't know how you motivate yourself to show up worse for the game after you narrowly avoided being steamrolled the game previous, but Vancouver did it.

3 Stars

3. Khabby - No soft goals, some nice saves. There were a few rushes where he had to lay down the law in net. 3 goals doesn't do him justice. Plus, first win since 1998 against Vancouver? Have a heart!

2. Patrick Sharp - 2 goals, everywhere on the ice. Can't ask for much more.

1. The Burish/Bolland/Eager line. 5 points, including the Game Winning Goal and the first go ahead, shorthanded goal by Bolland. Even Eager played as well as I ever expect Eager to play, and he only took the one weak penalty and then was effective as an agitator the rest of the game. Burish was all over the ice, and Bolland's shorthanded goal, frankly, made Luongo look foolish, and was the result of just a great read on the play. Wonderful, I'd have loved to have given it to one of them, but what an effort by the 3rd liners.



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