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Hawks @ (Child) Predators Preview

December 26, 2009

Well the holidays are over and its time to come back to the snowy hell of Chicago winter.  I hate to continue to be the bearer of bad news, but the Blackhawks play the Nashville Predators tonight.

There’s a lot of things that I hate about playing in Nashville. Their goal song, the “Predators are ON…THE…POWWEERRRPLAAYYY” shit, the fucking neutral zone trap, and Barry Trotz doing his King Koopa impersonation.  But no matter how much I hate them, they just don’t seem to go away.  At least we’ll be done with them after this ridiculous home-and-home series.

The Hawks are coming off their stomping of the Detroit/Grand Rapids Red Wings/Griffins who pretty much just bent over and took their punishment at the start of the game on Wednesday.  Tonight will be very different.  Nashville is coming in 6-1-1 in their last 8 games.  They’re only 4 points back from the Hawks with one more game played.  Nobody saw that coming.  Nobody really knows how they’re doing it either.  They are mediocre in goals-for and goals-against. Patric Hornqvist is the only player who can score with Jason Arnott out a lot this season.  Their special teams units are both awful.  The only category that they have excelled in is goaltending.  They’re going to kill all speed and stickhandling of their opponent and rely on their goalie to win the games.

Dan Ellis stumped the Hawks the last time the two teams played.  Seems to be a recurring trend for the Hawks.  Expect to see Shea Weber out every time Hossa hits the ice.  The Hawks are going to need some scoring from the 2nd and 3rd lines to win this one.  Of course that requires Versteeg to dump the puck in and win some battles in the corner.  He looks absolutely terrified of this idea and would much rather skate into 4 defenders.

Expect Bickell in for Eager and Hendry in for Barker again. Its a toss-up in net. They’ll probably both get one start this weekend.

This is going to be a very frustrating game.  Grab some beer because its the only way you’ll keep yourself from stabbing your leg with a knife just to know what it is to feel again.

UPDATE: Barker and Eager are back in tonight. Hjalmarsson and Versteeg are out with the flu.

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