Down 2-1 Blackhawks Can Still Succeed In Series

Blackhawks Let’s see…so much to talk about. Something that’s been on my mind lately is the lack of participation from the United Center crowd…wait…we’ve got that covered. The crowds may be a disappointment, but the article is not.

Damn. I’m going to do my best not to follow with something that sucks. I promise. That’s kind of up to the Blackhawks though.

In the early hours before Game Two, I was ankle deep in empty beer cans and broken Jameson bottles. Like a trooper, I forced myself to get up at the crack of Mid-Day to watch the Blackhawks soldier on in quest of the Stanley Cup.

Hindsight is always 20/20 – even if you’re still wearing beer goggles at 3:00pm and you’re forced to watch the damned Preakness coverage because you’re too hungover to look for the remote vaguely thrown after the Red Wings scored the “that probably seals the win” fourth goal.

I can’t be positive, but it’s possible some of the Hawks’ players were at my house boozing it up*. If they weren’t, what other excuse is there? Here’s to hoping Game Three is a better outcome for the city that doesn’t have a statue of RoboCop (even though that’s awesome). Can Patrick Kane turn up the heat from lukewarm and put more pucks in the back on the net? Will Jonathan Toews get the monkey off his back and force Joe Romano into an apology?

——–Seven Hours Later——–

Bad news everywhere.

You would think that being down 3-1 is the low point. But, to quote Brad Pitt in Moneyball, “…then there’s fifty feet of crap, and then there’s us”.  Listen, yes, the officiating was…it was what it was. Officials didn’t decide the outcome of this game. The Hawks’ kill did what it has done for the entirety of the playoffs and majority of the season – it killed off every one. However, the Hawks’ powerplay did what it has done during the same time period – nothing.

Let the unraveling begin. Every little gripe that was stashed away this season when things were good broke through; no matter what the problem was, that was the issue. Corey Crawford, officials, Stan Bowman, Joel Quenneville line changes, Michal Roszival, Michal Handzus, healthy-scratch Dan Carillo.

No. Stop. Pretend to be a Blackhawks fan with a brain. For the second game in a row, the Blackhawks got outworked. They also contributed in beating themselves. Poor passing, poor entrances into the Wings’ zone, poor decisions in shots. Poor, poor, poor.

Don’t be afraid to give credit to the Red Wings. Here’s a team that has been playing a form of playoff hockey since the final 10 games of the regular season. Then, a hard-fought opening round victory against a higher seed. Mike Babcock used the home rules to his advantage – just as we knew he would. He took advantage of being able to get the favorable matchups. Consequently, these lines were able to continue the shutdown of the Hawks top players.

Oh, the Hawks just took another late penalty. “Unraveling” is too kind an adjective.

But, the bright side is that the Hawks can still get done the primary objective early in a series. All they need to do is take one game from the Red Wings in Joe Louis Arena. That’s it.

We’ve been shown the Wings have what it takes to answer. If the Hawks are to have any hope for the rest of this series, they’re going to need to dig deep and find whatever it was that made them a powerhouse in the regular season.

Do that, or break out the golf clubs and book a tee time.

Find Brennan Barry on Twitter @midway_brennan

*I don’t hang out with Blackhawks players