Blackhawks

Disaster in Dallas: Hawks suffer 'worst loss'

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Disaster in Dallas: Hawks suffer 'worst loss'

Thursday, March 17, 2011
Posted: 10:00 p.m. Updated: 11:19 p.m.
By Tracey Myers
CSNChicago.com

DALLAS Back in February, Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews was at a loss in figuring out what happened in their loss to the Dallas Stars.

More than a month later, it was the same stuff, different day.

Angry Toews doesn't hold anything back

Five different Stars scored and the Blackhawks were punchless, emotionless and worst of all scoreless in a 5-0 drubbing to Dallas at the American Airlines Center.

The Blackhawks and Stars both have 84 points, but the Blackhawks drop to seventh in the Western Conference because Dallas won the season series (3-1-0).

Considering what was at stake, the Blackhawks effort or lack thereof was perplexing.

It looks we all picked the same night to crap the bed, Toews said. We couldnt have been a worse night of the year to do that. It feels like its dj vu. It feels like the same exact thing the last time we were here.

Problem was, its a month later and the Blackhawks are desperate for points. Yet they came out so-so and got worse as the night continued. Steve Ott scored on a breakaway and Jamie Benn scored on a 2 on 1 and the Blackhawks had absolutely no answers.

Corey Crawford was gone after Brenden Morrows goal three and a half minutes into the second period. He allowed three goals on 10 shots. Marty Turco finished, allowing two goals on 17 shots.

We were very generous on the type of goals and how they scored them, Quenneville said. All gifts.

At this point, it could be the Blackhawks worst loss this season.

Yeah, definitely, said defenseman Brent Seabrook. They wanted the game more than we did tonight. They won more battles, fought for loose pucks harder and when they had a chance they put it in the back of the net. We did the opposite of that.

Turco: Disappointing, embarrassing

Why that was, however, was a mystery to Quenneville.

Thats a tough one to explain, he said. There was nothing good about that game. I dont have a good answer to (the lack of emotion). We didnt see it coming. Were OK, its 1-0 and all of a sudden we became not smart and we didnt compete.

The Blackhawks frustration was evident as the game progressed. Toews said the Blackhawks best players needed to be that tonight, and they werent. The Blackhawks top line, which has sizzled for so long, was held to just three shots on goal.

And whether it was off a blocked Blackhawks shot or turnover or the Stars own hard work, Dallas had the upper hand throughout.

Its disappointing the way we played and the type of effort we seemed like we had, Turco said. Youre at that time of year when you have to move on, let it go. We need to figure out what to do to have a better start and tidy things up. Its over, its embarrassing, its sad, but we have to go on to the next one.

The Blackhawks probably want to forget about this one as quickly as possible. But with no game again until Sunday, theyll have nothing but time to think about the missed opportunity.

We shouldnt forget about this one too quick, Toews said. Theres no excuse for it. Those are two points we pretty much gave away. We knew it was going to be one of the toughest games of the year and we had one of our worst performances. Its pretty unacceptable.

Quennevilles summation was more succinct.

Over the course of year have some games you throw in the garbage can that you dont foresee happening. This is definitely one of them.

Playoff tickets on sale

The Blackhawks announced today that single-game tickets for the first two rounds of potential Stanley Cup playoff home games will go on sale to the general public at 11 a.m. Monday. Each customer will be limited to four total tickets. Refunds for not played playoff games will be available at the point of purchase. In that case, the card used to buy tickets by internet or phone will be automatically credited.

Tickets are available exclusively through Ticketmaster. Call (800) 745-3000 or go to ticketmaster.com.
Briefly

Bryan Bickell was a late scratch due to illness on Thursday. Quenneville said Bickell was fine after morning skate, which Bickell missed, but that the forward got sick later on in the day. We asked if he was ready to go and he was (this morning) but he got sick before the game. It can happen like that. We thought he was good to go. Things changed quickly, Quenneville said.

Theres an outside chance that defenseman Brian Campbell (foot) could join the Blackhawks when they play the Phoenix Coyotes on Sunday. Dave Bolland (concussion) is likely out for that game.

Tracey Myers is CSNChicago.com's Blackhawks Insider. Follow Tracey on Twitter @TramyersCSN for up-to-the-minute Hawks information.

Blackhawks and Blue Jackets both going through own challenges of Artemi Panarin and Brandon Saad trade

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USA TODAY

Blackhawks and Blue Jackets both going through own challenges of Artemi Panarin and Brandon Saad trade

The Blackhawks and Blue Jackets blockbuster trade from the 2017 offseason is always a hot topic in Chicago when things aren't going great. It especially is when the two teams square off against each other, like Saturday at Nationwide Arena for the first time this season.

If it wasn't already apparent in Chicago, Artemi Panarin has emerged as a real NHL superstar and is set for a giant payday when he becomes an unrestricted free agent on July 1, 2019. He set a Blue Jackets record with 82 points in a single season and has nine points (three goals, six assists) through six games this season.

Brandon Saad, on the other hand, had a challenging first year back with the Blackhawks in 2017-18 after netting only 35 points in 82 games and is off to a slow start this year as well with zero goals and two assists through six games. After a demotion to the fourth line, he was close to being a healthy scratch on Thursday, which only magnifies where things are at as the two get ready to clash.

But Saad was never going to be able to replace Panarin's offensive production. Everybody knows that. Yet, the offensive comparisons will always be there as a barometer and that's something Saad doesn't think about, no matter how much fans talk about it.

"I don't think I do it," he said. "We're different players. He's a great player. Fans are going to do whatever comparisons they want, but at the end of the day you've got to be true to yourself and do what you bring to the table. He's a great player around the league. You can see his highlights and his goals, he's definitely a special player. But at the end of the day I've got confidence in my abilities too. We both bring different attributes, but they're going to make comparisons regardless."

A big reason why the Blackhawks reacquired Saad, other than his ability to play a 200-foot game, is because he carries a $6 million cap hit through 2020-21, which is two years more than Panarin at the same cap hit. (It's also important to note that the Blackhawks hoped they were getting a reliable, young backup goaltender in Anton Forsberg, but the injury to Corey Crawford thrust him into a role he wasn't exactly prepared for.)

It's not all rainbows for Columbus right now regarding where things stand with Panarin, who has made it clear he's not ready to sign a long-term extension. All signs point to the 26-year-old winger hitting the market, putting the Blue Jackets in a tricky situation ahead of the trade deadline. The Blackhawks very well could have found themselves in this position, too, had a deal not been made.

Both sides are dealing with their own challenges of the trade. Saad is still a key piece to the Blackhawks' puzzle and they're hoping to get more out of him, for no other reason than the team's overall success.

"You want to have success regardless of who you're playing for, who you're traded for, things like that," Saad said. "Naturally, just as competitors, you want to bring that excitement and you want to have success with the team and personally."

Anthony Duclair regrets not making most of opportunity with Blackhawks

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USA TODAY

Anthony Duclair regrets not making most of opportunity with Blackhawks

Anthony Duclair knew what kind of opportunity he had in front of him when he was traded to the Blackhawks in January. The first day he stepped into the locker room, he admitted he was a little "star-struck."

But the marriage didn't last very long. 

After recording only two goals and eight assists in 23 games, the Blackhawks chose to move on from the restricted free agent by not extending a qualifying offer. Duclair later latched on with the Columbus Blue Jackets on a one-year, $650,000 "prove-it" deal.

"I wasn't surprised," Duclair said before Saturday's game against his former team. "I knew that I didn't perform as well as I did when I was there. I think I was there for only 20 games and didn't live up to the standards. As soon as I didn't hear anything from my agent I sort of got the message. But it was time to move on."

Duclair made no excuses for what went wrong in Chicago and accepted responsibility for not taking advantage of his opportunity, even though a leg injury sidelined him for the final month that prevented him from giving the Blackhawks a larger sample size.

"I just didn't perform well," he said. "It's going to be one of my regrets, to get that opportunity in Chicago and not perform in the way I did. It was something I had to look in the mirror this summer and move on obviously, but at the same time whenever a team comes next I think I'm going to take that opportunity and run away with it."

It's obvious that Duclair's got the potential to be an effective offensive player in the NHL. But we've only seen that in flashes, which is a large reason why it didn't work out in Chicago and why, entering his fifth season in the league, he still finds himself trying to play for a long-term contract.

"Just being more consistent," Duclair said. "Thats comes up a lot and my agents talks to a couple GMs around the league and it's something I'm trying to work on. It's not something you can work on in the summer, it's more preparing mentally and physically and that's what I've been trying to do."

So far, so good in Columbus.

Duclair has two goals and two assists through six games and is averaging 15:22 of ice time playing in a top-six role, on track to shatter his previous career high in that category (14:23) when he did so as a sophomore in 2015-16 with Arizona. He even made headlines on Thursday after scoring a highlight-reel goal against the Philadelphia Flyers, saying his "phone blew up quite a bit."

How he scored it is what stood out and his perspective after it is encouraging for his overall growth, as well.

"I've already put it behind me to be honest with you," Duclair said. "I'm just focused on Chicago now. I want to be consistent throughout every shift. Look at that goal, [it was] second and third efforts. That's what I want to bring to the table every shift, especially with the guys I'm playing right now. I just want to be having the puck whenever you can and being big on the forecheck."