The Chicago Blackhawks defeated the Nashville Predators 5-3 on Saturday night for their first victory of the season while splitting the home and home matchup with Nashville. Here are three thoughts about the victory.
The Chicago Blackhawks finally put up a number underneath the Win column, and so here are three thoughts about the 5-3 victory from the United Center.
3. The Hawks starting out strong once again!
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The Chicago Blackhawks have done one thing right in all three game so far this season, and that’s they have scored first in all three games. It’s not been the big guns that have done the early work either, and tonight it was the rookie Nick Schmaltz who won the puck on the boards and put a nifty wrister past the Nashville goalie for the 1-0 lead.
Tonight was the first time in the early season that the Chicago Blackhawks were able to put a couple goals together and this time they put three in a row in less than 4 minute span. I like the fact that the Hawks are coming out fast each and every night.
The Chicago Blackhawks golden era of hockey has been one based on puck possession and out shooting their opponents night in and night out. That being said three games into the season, and the Chicago Blackhawks are losing the puck possession battle and getting out shot by a lot each and every game.
Of course it’s early into the season, and we can blame the Hawks youth for struggling to get pucks on the net and winning the puck possession battle. The youth will grow up and get better game in and game out, with Schmaltz being one of those that almost looked out of place for the first 5 periods of his career. Schmaltz turned it around in the third period of last night’s game, and there he was scoring the games opening goal with a good play to win the puck before the goal.
One of my biggest questions entering the season besides all the youth on the roster had to be would Richard Panik be able to play consistent enough to deserve to play on the top line with Jonathan Toews.
Of course Joel Quenneville has been shuffling lines already, but Panik collected his first NHL Hat trick because he’s getting in front of the net and getting some gritty goals. Panik still isn’t Brandon Saad, but he’s putting pucks in the back of the net and hopefully he can carry this momentum in the next few games.
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It was great to see the Hawks finally collect their first victory! What are your thoughts after tonight’s 5-3 win?