Game 7: Blackhawks look to complete comeback


Game 7: Blackhawks look to complete comeback

Tuesday, April 26, 2011
Posted: 3:06 p.m.
By Tracey Myers
VANCOUVER, British Columbia Vancouver coach Alain Vigneault summed it up best in his trip to the podium on Tuesday morning.

Theres really not much else to say is there? he said.

No, there really isnt. Its Game 7, its win or go home, its just all about the game now.

Tomas Kopecky is out and Marcus Kruger andor Fernando Pisani could be in tonight as the Chicago Blackhawks face the Vancouver Canucks one more time in this best-of-seven series.

CHAT with Steve Konroyd, Chris Boden during Game 7 tonight

Other than stating a few roster items updates Kopecky and Bryan Bickell (wrist) are obviously out for the Blackhawks and Roberto Luongo is starting for Vancouver neither coach was tipping his hand as to lines and those who may suit up for injured players.

The Blackhawks looked and sounded like a loose group following this mornings skate. Many players said theyre still not feeling the pressure, despite it being first Game 7 for most.

We have to go with the same mindset tonight as the last three games. Were having fun and pressures on them, Viktor Stalberg said. This city isnt going to be happy if they lose four straight to us. Thats how we feel. Its fun for us. We can go in without pressure and go with it.

Bickells work

The Blackhawks knew Bickell was going to be missing at some point after he had severed ligaments in his wrist during Game 2 of these playoffs. Quenneville said he was happy with what the forward was able to do through the next few games.

WATCH: Hockey Central's Jeremy Roenick and Keith Jones predict Blackhawks will advance

I thought he gave us three solid games and that line was really effective, said Quenneville of the Bickell-Dave Bolland-Michael Frolik combo. We didn't know what to expect when we first put it together but it was a great surprise the first game and they played pretty solid ones after that. But itll give somebody some quality ice time tonight and a good opportunity to play with a couple guys that have been playing well as well.

Official talk

Vancouver GM Mike Gillis was very vocal on Monday regarding the officiating through this series. Gillies pointed to the discrepancy in power plays, which favor the Blackhawks by a good margin.

READ: Bickell has wrist surgery, will miss 6-8 weeks

The Blackhawks talked about it Tuesday.

To be honest I think its a good move by him, Patrick Kane said. You try to get the emphasis on something else and maybe the league or refs start thinking about it but I dont think its going to matter. I think itll be a pretty fair game.
Tracey Myers is's Blackhawks Insider. Follow Tracey on Twitter @TramyersCSN for up-to-the-minute Hawks information.

Penalty kill struggles again in Blackhawks’ loss to Blue Jackets

Penalty kill struggles again in Blackhawks’ loss to Blue Jackets

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Blackhawks were trying a different look on Friday, going with seven defensemen. But at the end of the night, it was something all too familiar contributing to their downfall.

Tyler Motte scored the first goal of his NHL career but the Blackhawks gave up two more power-play goals in their 3-2 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday night. It was another night on which special teams doomed the Blackhawks; through the first five games of their regular season, their penalty kill has now allowed 11 goals.

And the loss could also sting them, personnel-wise. Trevor van Riemsdyk went hard into the post late in the second period and did not return. Coach Joel Quenneville said van Riemsdyk, who has had his injury issues in the past, “may be out for a bit.” Quenneville added that he’ll know more on Saturday.

Quenneville dressed seven defensemen to get everyone playing. Van Riemsdyk had been a healthy scratch the previous three games. It also gave him a chance to put Brian Campbell back on the left, his normal side. But regardless of the new defensive look, the penalty kill remained its unreliable self.

“It just seems a lot of times it’s a quick play off a faceoff and it’s in our net,” said Duncan Keith. “It’s a few different things and obviously, we as players, we need to take ownership of it and figure out a way to get the job done. You watch it, there’s lots of different things.”

[SHOP: Gear up, Blackhawks fans!]

Blue Jackets forward Nick Foligno was set up right in front of Corey Crawford on both of their successful power plays. On the first, a Zach Werenski goal, Foligno set the screen. On the second, he tipped David Savard’s shot. The Blackhawks’ confidence has to be shaken, and that never helps.

“It’s the same way 5-on-5: I think when you’re snake bitten you tend to try too hard and do too much. That can end up hurting you as well,” Jonathan Toews said. “As forwards I think that’s the No. 1 thing. We have to be better getting in shot lanes. It started on the road against Nashville, they scored two goals going right past our forwards and it kind of led one game after another to today.”

Still, the Blackhawks had a great chance to find an equalizer at the end. They got a power play with 3:26 remaining. Despite some good scoring chances, and Crawford pulled for an extra attacker, the Blackhawks couldn’t capitalize. Columbus goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 32 of 34 shots in the victory.

The Blackhawks can’t stop the bleeding on the penalty kill. It’s cost them in all three of their losses and it’s made their two victories closer than necessary. They know what the problems are. They have to fix them fast.

“Both plays could have been prevented, whether it was a block, clear, just got to get sharper, more determination and try to stay out of the box,” Quenneville said. “Starts from the faceoff to a clear to shots and recognize when there’s a chance to pressure. We had a couple of opportunities there. they end up in our net right now.”

Trevor van Riemsdyk leaves game early with injury

Trevor van Riemsdyk leaves game early with injury

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Trevor van Riemsdyk finally had a healthy season in 2015-16. Now an injury could sideline him again.

Van Riemsdyk was injured late in the second period and did not return in the Blackhawks’ game against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday night. The defenseman, who was back in the lineup after being a healthy scratch the last three games, got tangled up with Blue Jackets forward Josh Anderson as Anderson drove the net. Both went into the net, but van Riemsdyk’s right arm/shoulder went directly into the post.

Coach Joel Quenneville is expected to have an update following the game.

[SHOP: Gear up, Blackhawks fans!]

Van Riemsdyk suffered a fractured ankle in his final college season. He also missed most of the 2014-15 season – his first with the Blackhawks – with a fractured kneecap and later a wrist injury. He came back to play in the Stanley Cup final.