Blackhawks breakdown: Brendan Morrison

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Blackhawks breakdown: Brendan Morrison

CSNChicago.com Blackhawks Insider Tracey Myers and PGL host Chris Boden will evaluate the 2011-12 performance of each player on the Hawks roster. One breakdown will occur every weekday in numerical order.
After being acquired in a trade with the Calgary Flames on Jan. 27, Brendan Morrison was uses sparingly by Joel Quenneville. He only played in 11 games for the Blackhawks, averaging 12 minutes and 22 seconds of ice time and did not record a point in the regular season, while finishing minus-4. Morrison played in three games of the firs-round series vs. Phoenix, playing just over 12 minutes per game and scoring a goal in Game 4.

Boden's take: Stan Bowman took a flyer on beating the trade deadline by a month and acquiring the 36-year-old from Calgary with the hope he could compete for second-line center. It backfired, but to this point, the price wasn't steep (Rockford defenseman Brian Connelly). Morrison had been slow to recover from a knee injury he suffered against the Hawks almost a year earlier, and Quenneville intimated he wasn't in the kind of physical shape as the rest of his players. He was a healthy scratch in 21 of 32 games after his acquisition, not registering a point until he scored a goal when given a chance in Game 4 against the Coyotes -- replacing Jamal Mayers in the lineup.

Myers' take: When the Blackhawks traded for the veteran forward a month before the trade deadline, they didnt give up much for him. Unfortunately for the Blackhawks, they didnt get much out of their him, either. Morrison suffered a season-ending knee injury against the Blackhawks in 2010-11, and it looked like he still had off-and-on issues with that knee. Morrison struggled to break into the lineup, especially once the Blackhawks started winning late in the regular season. While he got in a few playoff games - and scored a goal - it was an otherwise forgettable few months here.

2012-13 Expectations

Chris: The final three games vs. Phoenix were his best games as a Hawk. Still, unless no one else is giving him a shot and the Hawks just want to give him a tryout in camp, the UFA's career in Chicago would seem to be over.

Tracey: Anythings possible but I dont foresee Morrison returning to the Blackhawks next season. The veteran has had a solid career and is a great locker-room presence. But the injuries have piled up - hes hurt, and had surgery on, both knees - and there may not be anything left in his career. At least not with the Blackhawks.

How do you feel about this evaluation? As always, be sure to chime in with your thoughts by commenting below and check out Morrison's only Blackhawks goal by watching the highlights above.

Previously: Duncan Keith, Niklas Hjalmarsson, SteveMontador, Sean O'Donnell, Brent Seabrook, Nick Leddy, Patrick Sharp, Daniel Carcillo, Andrew Brunette, Marcus KrugerUp next: Jonathan Toews

Jonathan Marchessault's hat trick leads Panthers rout of Blackhawks

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AP

Jonathan Marchessault's hat trick leads Panthers rout of Blackhawks

SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) -- Jonathan Marchessault scored his first career hat trick, James Reimer stopped 25 shots for his first shutout of the season and the Florida Panthers routed the Chicago Blackhawks 7-0 on Saturday night.

Jonathan Huberdeau had a goal and three assists, and Aleksander Barkov added a goal and two assists for Florida. Reilly Smith and Nick Bjugstad also scored to give the Panthers their largest margin of victory since an 8-0 win over Toronto on Feb. 5, 2008.

Marchessault had two goals in a 3-1 win over Arizona on Thursday. He has nine goals over his last nine games and leads the Panthers with 28.

Corey Crawford stopped 21 shots for the Blackhawks before being lifted at 4:59 of the third for Scott Darling, who allowed three goals on six shots.

Already leading 3-0, the Panthers poured in four goals in the third.

Brett Anderson’s personality mixing well with Cubs: ‘I don’t hate anybody yet’

Brett Anderson’s personality mixing well with Cubs: ‘I don’t hate anybody yet’

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Joe Maddon's T-shirt slogans can get a little old at times, but the Cubs manager found a new audience in Brett Anderson, who liked the idea of "Be Uncomfortable" after signing a one-year, prove-it deal with the defending champs.

"It's been awesome so far," Anderson said. "That's my running joke – we're a month into it now or whatever it is – and I don't hate anybody yet.

"That's a testament to the group as a whole – and maybe me evolving as a person."

Yes, Anderson's sarcasm, social-media presence and groundball style fits in with a team built around short-term pitching and Gold Glove defense. The if-healthy lefty finished his Cactus League tour on Saturday afternoon by throwing four innings (one unearned run) during a 7-4 loss to the Colorado Rockies in front of 13,565 at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick.

Anderson will open the season as the No. 4 starter after a camp that has been remarkably low-key and drama-free.

"I'm kind of cynical by nature, but it's a fun group to be a part of," Anderson said, "(with) young guys that are exciting and happy to be here. And then obviously the mix of veterans, too, that are here with intentions of winning another World Series."

To make that happen, the pitching staff will have to again stay unbelievably healthy. Anderson rolled with a general question about how he physically feels now compared to where he's usually at by this time of year.

"Obviously better than last year, because I was walking with a gimp and all that stuff," said Anderson, who underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair a bulging disk in his lower back last March. "No, my body feels good, my arm feels good and you're getting into the dog days of spring training where you're itching to get to the real thing."