Well friends, the time has come live hockey is back. It might be preseason and it might be a shit show, but it’s better than watching the cubs and white sox out terrible each other every night.
The Blackhawks headed up to Saskatoon to take on the Edmonton Oilers Smyth/Eberle/Nugent-Hopkins line. For the lucky few who got to watch the live feed on the Blackhawks website it was a time traveling adventure seeing what felt like watching a game in the late 1980s. (See also: hearing loss and a desire for Dairy Queen.) I don’t think I saw Doug Wilson out there, but then again I was only partially paying attention for the first couple minutes.
The Oliers went up 2-0 before Rostislav Olesz picked off a clearing attempt then Jamal Mayers got one off the tick-tack-toe moves of Kyle Beach and 2011 first rounder Mark McNeill. Thus, tying the game through two periods. Jordan Eberle streaked up the ice at the end of a blackhawks penalty kill to make it 3-2 for the Oilers late in the third period. And as luck would have it, Ryan O’marra seals the 4-2 deal with an empty netter.
Things I liked:
- Jamal Mayers being the strong veteran presence the Blackhawks front office brought him in for. Saw him during breaks in play being verbal and trying to get things going.
- Viktor Stalberg kicking it in front of the net. I KNOW. I CAN’T BELIEVE IT EITHER. I liked what I saw from him at camp last Saturday, he actually looks like he kind of gives a shit or two.
- I wasn’t expecting a whole lot from Rostislav Olesz so his play surprised me.
- The kids who won’t play in the NHL this year, but still giving it their all : McNeill, Saad.
Things that I didn’t like:
- Clown Shoes Powerplay© Chicago Blackhawks fall 2010-present. I know it’s the first game of the pre-season but good god Mike Kitchen I don’t even know that much about hockey and I’m pretty sure I could write up something better than your 0 for 5 efforts tonight.
- Kyle Beach still plays like Kyle Beach. You’re going to have to do something Beach or your going to keep having the kids waving past as they get called up from Rockford to Chicago.
- Ben Smith was kind of.. um.. invisible.
- But really, oh my god the power play.
While Emery did give up the first two goals I thought he looked better than Salak. Thankfully there’s this Crawford guy I keep hearing about who’s looking to take the number one spot for the season.
There you have it. Preseason is here, it’s only a matter of a few weeks before this tease is over.