Fraser notes similarities between Kings, Blackhawks


Fraser notes similarities between Kings, Blackhawks

NEWARK, N.J. Los Angeles Kings center Colin Fraser is enjoying his second Stanley Cup finals in the past three seasons. And the forward is seeing the similarities between these Kings and the Blackhawks, with whom he hoisted the Cup in 2010.

And right at the top of the list is, of course, depth.

Both teams had a lot of depth. Me and (Adam) Burish were sitting out the last game of the year in Chicago, and now were regulars on our (respective) teams, Fraser said. You need depth, because when guys get hurt or arent pulling their weight or whatever, someone else needs to step in.

The Blackhawks have been missing that since their Cup run. The onus has fallen onto the stars too often, and the supporting cast hasnt provided enough, well, support, when the top guys have gone into slumps. Meanwhile, the Kings depth was evident in Game 1 against the New Jersey Devils. The Kings top players were sputtering, prompting coach Darryl Sutter to play his fourth liners Fraser, Brad Richardson and Jordan Nolan more. The three averaged about 11:30 ice time each and staked the Kings to a 1-0 lead in the first.

Fraser said the camaraderie in Los Angeles matches that Blackhawks team, too.

With any championship team, its a tight group, he said. Even coming here at the beginning of the season, the guys were awesome. I can say, with Chicago, I still have friends on that team.

Fraser will always think fondly of his Chicago days. He built great memories there, especially on the ice. Hes hoping to do the same in L.A., and his past teammates are never far from his mind or his phone.

We still keep in touch, he said. Were all rooting for each other.

Complete Cubs-Dodgers NLCS Game 6 coverage on CSN

Complete Cubs-Dodgers NLCS Game 6 coverage on CSN

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Five Things from Blackhawks-Blue Jackets: Same mistakes resurface

Five Things from Blackhawks-Blue Jackets: Same mistakes resurface

COLUMBUS, Ohio – We’ll save you some time tonight. The Blackhawks lost another one in familiar fashion. You can guess what our focus will be, so let’s get right to it.

Here are Five Things to take from the Blackhawks’ 3-2 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

1. We’re trying not to pick on the penalty kill again, but… it cost them again. The Blackhawks gave up their 10th and 11th power-play goals in their first five games on Friday night. Opponents are planting themselves in front of Corey Crawford and, be it screens or tips, they’re capitalizing. Long-distance shots are getting through far too often. “I think our focus always has to be 5-on-5. When our effort and our energy and our work ethic is there it usually translates into our special teams and I don’t know. It’s frustrating," Jonathan Toews said. "We definitely have to keep pushing to find a solution. Even when it seems like we’re doing a good job bounces go against us. We deserve all the criticism and we just have to keep finding ways, dig deep and really try to dig ourselves out of this thing.”

2. The seven-defenseman set. Quenneville didn’t want Trevor van Riemsdyk sitting out too long, and for a few days it looked like Brian Campbell was going to be the odd-man out tonight. Instead the Blackhawks went with seven, which gave them the chance to rotate and put Campbell back on his natural left. With that, however, the forward lines were naturally skewed. Patrick Kane played nearly 29 minutes. Quenneville said earlier this season that it wouldn’t be something the Blackhawks would try often. Speaking of van Riemsdyk…

[SHOP: Gear up, Blackhawks fans!]

3. Van Riemsdyk hurt again. You have to feel for van Riemsdyk. He finally got healthy last season playing in all 82 games after knee and wrist injuries sidelined him the previous one. Now it looks like he’ll be out again after he went hard into the net late in the second period. Van Riemsdyk got tangled up and his right arm/shoulder collided with the post.

4. Tyler Motte gets his first. The University of Michigan product scored his first career NHL goal, a rebound off a Toews shot in the second period. Considering the game’s outcome, however, Motte’s enthusiasm was tempered. “It was exciting. It felt good to chip in offensively but obviously the real story is us losing another game,” he said. “We were better in the offensive zone but there are still some things to improve on. The most important thing is winning games.”

5. Brandon Saad great but stymied. The former Blackhawks left wing had some tremendous scoring opportunities on Friday. He had a team-high seven shots, most high quality, but Crawford stopped him every time. Just in case anyone needed a reminder of what the kid is capable of, regardless of which sweater he’s wearing.