Chat with Scott Powers
Welcome to ESPNChicago.com! On Wednesday, Chicago Blackhawks reporter Scott Powers stops by to chat.
Powers covers the Blackhawks for both ESPN Radio 1000 and ESPNChicago.com.
Send your questions now and join the chat Wednesday at noon CT/1 p.m. ET!
Scott Powers (1:02 PM)
Hello, hope everyone is having a good Wednesday. I'll be here for about an hour or so to take your questions.
Any word on Hossa?
Scott Powers (1:05 PM)
This is obviously the question on everyone's mind today. There hasn't been an official update on him yet, and there probably won't be today since the team doesn't practice. Quenneville said he talked with Hossa after the game yesterday, and he seemed okay. I'll be sure to update everyone as soon as I hear today or tomorrow on it.
Gerry Janes (Canada)
Scott After Starting the year with such a great PK , The hawks have now allow 4 in there last 4 games. Now no one expects them to be perfect. But, was it just a good start by there penalty killers or just a bad last couple of games
Scott Powers (1:08 PM)
Gerry, I'd say the penalty kill is for real. It was a large enough sample size to show that. The Blackhawks have piled up the penalties in the past few games and eventually opponents are going to capitalize on their power plays. The Blackhawks have been on the penalty kill 17 times in the last four games. They need to cut down on that.
Dennis H (Muncie, IN)
These cheap shots on the Hawks' stars are getting old fast. Who else needs to get nailed before Bowman acquires an efforcer? Carcillo will help, but he needs to add someone to make opponents think twice before hitting any of the Hawks. Any rumors circulating?
Scott Powers (1:10 PM)
Dennis, teams are going to take cheap shots if they want. I don't think it's going to matter whether you have an enforcer on the ice or not. Toews stepped to Hansen when the hit occurred yesterday, and Bollig tried to fight him later. I think the Blackhawks defend their teammates when needed. I still don't think the Blackhawks have to go out and get another physical type of player. Carcillo's return should help in that area, too.
CBHAWKSONE (Cherry Hill NJ)
Scott..Is it me or is Patrick Kane been reverting back to old form the last few games with an increase in turnovers and a lack of hustle. Maybe it?s just the way his game plays out. Don?t get me wrong, fantastic player, but sometimes he can be frustrating to watch
Scott Powers (1:11 PM)
Kane hasn't been as productive in the last few games, but he was at a crazy pace to start with. He had a nice pass to Sharp for his goal yesterday, and Kane still scored in the shootout. I don't think there's too much to worry about at this point.
Almost every third period, the Hawks play in a shell. They play not to lose. It cost them the game against Anaheim and almost cost them against the Kings and Canucks. When will they learn to keep their foot on the gas?
Scott Powers (1:15 PM)
Mike, I think the third-period play has to be the biggest concern right now. It cost them a point against the Ducks. They nearly blew Sunday's lead against the Kings, and it was a factor again yesterday. They've had some bad penalties in the third period, and they don't appear to be as aggressive. Like you wrote, it's like they're playing not to lose. I'll ask Quenneville and some players about it more tomorrow, but it's something they need to address.
Patrick Davis (Westchester)
Are Seabrook and Crawford showing any indications that they'll be ready to go by Friday?
Scott Powers (1:16 PM)
Patrick, it sounds like Crawford and Seabrook should be back soon. Crawford skated yesterday, and Quenneville thought he'd have Seabrook back in a few days. I'll have more on this tomorrow when they return to practice.
Any chance they send Saad back down?
Scott Powers (1:18 PM)
Charlie, I don't see that happening. Bowman said earlier in the year he planned on keeping him up all year. Saad hasn't produced much, but Quenneville has been still happy with his play.
i'm not convinced bolland is the answer at 2nd line center - any talk of either trying to trade for one or possibly moving kruger up to that role?
Scott Powers (1:20 PM)
Skip, there isn't much trade rumor talk right now. At 13-0-3, the Blackhawks are feeling pretty good with their roster. Quenneville has been happy with the lines, so I don't foresee a change there. Kruger has definitely shined this season, though. If a change is ever needed this season, I could see him moving up.
If Hossa misses an extended period of time, who gets called up and who fills his place on the top line?
Scott Powers (1:24 PM)
Pat, I think Brandon Pirri, Jeremy Morin and Jimmy Hayes are the logical Rockford players who could get a call if Hossa misses extended time. The Blackhawks could also just shuffle around what they have. With Carcillo coming back, they were going to have to take someone off a line anyway. Mayers and Bollig have been taking turns on that fourth line.
Pamela (St pete, fl)
Any thoughts on who takes hossa's spot on the top line if he misses any time? I would prefer to keep the second line intact. Stalberg? Carcillo?
Scott Powers (1:27 PM)
Pamela, if Hossa misses time, I would think they would add another goal-scoring threat to that line. Stalberg could be an option. Sharp and Kane are usually pretty good together, so I don't know if Quenneville would alter that second line, but that's a possibility, too.
Any status on Crawford? What happened? Eta?
Scott Powers (1:28 PM)
Mateo, he either was hurt in last week Tuesday's game or Thursday's practice. He did practice on Thursday. The assumption is he suffered a concussion. He skated yesterday, so he's making progress.
Bob Lisle [via mobile]
I know you addressed it earlier but do you believe that hossa's injury is as serious as it was last year in the playoffs?
Scott Powers (1:30 PM)
Bob, I can't say for certain, but it looked less serious considering he had to be taken off on a stretcher last season. He left the ice on his own power yesterday and also didn't immediately go to the hospital.
It seems like everyone has conveniently forgotten about the lack of a preseason, and is quoting stats like PK's as if this is a normal season. How about at least some conversation that the Hawks' fast start may be partly due to their better and younger athletes than many other teams.
Scott Powers (1:32 PM)
Lloyd, some of the younger guys have definitely taken steps in their game this season. You look at who was down in Rockford during the lockout, and guys like Kruger, Shaw, Leddy, etc. have been key to the season's start. That has to be a factor.
Think the Hawks will go after Hansen next time they play?
Scott Powers (1:33 PM)
I would assume so. The Blackhawks probably weren't satisfied yesterday. They don't play again until April 22, though.
Do you believe the Hossa hit calls for a suspension?
Scott Powers (1:35 PM)
Joe, I would imagine Hansen is disciplined in some way. I don't think it'll be anywhere near as severe as Torres, but the league is trying to crack down on those type of hits and protect players from suffering more head injuries.
Who do you like the best, Carmen, Jurko or Harry?
Scott Powers (1:36 PM)
Louis, no comment. You trying to get me in trouble?
Who do you think will lose his roster spot when Carcillo comes back?
Scott Powers (1:37 PM)
Bill, I would think Bollig and Mayers are the prime candidates. Let's see how Hossa is as well.
With Ray Emery's Hot start to the season, is there a possibility that Quenneville will keep him in net when Crawford comes back?
Scott Powers (1:39 PM)
Chris, I don't see there being a goalie controversy. Crawford was playing at a high level before he got hurt. If he comes and struggles, then that might open door for Emery. But I think Crawford returns to his starting role when he's back.
Sam (Lincoln Park)
Hey Scott, can you speak to the lack of transparancey in giving information on players injuries? Is it protecting players from getting 'targeted' in hits, or just to annoy fans looking for information? All these 'lower or upper body injuries' are infuriating.
Scott Powers (1:40 PM)
Sam, it can be annoying, but that's just the way in hockey. I'm sure some of it is not giving up too much information to opponents, but also protecting the players' medical rights. They're obviously a lot more transparent in other sports.
Tim (Traverse City, Michigan)
Anyone on the farm that Bowman has been impressed with that might come up to join the 'Hawks?
Scott Powers (1:44 PM)
Tim, it looks like Jimmy Hayes has played pretty well in the past month or so. He's been scoring pretty consistently. I imagine he could get a look again at some point.
Al (Downers Grove)
Do you think that last nights goal for Sharp finally turned things around for him? He seemed to be playing with a lot more hustle last night.
Scott Powers (1:45 PM)
Al, I think Sharp scoring two games ago has got him going again. He just needed to get that goal to break through. He nearly had a few last night. Even when he wasn't scoring, he was creating chances. That's a good sign for the Hawks to have him scoring again.
I agree we don't need "another" enforcer, but this team does seem to catch fire when somebody shows the other team they aren't going to take ****. For example, Towes fight and Mayers jumping Torres. I know Bollig went after Hansen last night, but I would've liked for him to finish the job...he barely played anyway...if we lost him after whooping up on that guy, even if it costs us a goal, I think we're better off. Thoughts?
Scott Powers (1:49 PM)
Sonny, the Blackhawks have shown a willingness to step for each other. I think that's important to them. Toews and Bollig did that again last night with Hansen. I don't think you're better off "whooping up" on someone or allowing a goal, but they do defend each other.
If Hossa misses much time, any chance we see Kyle Beach? He doesnt seem to have much of a problem punching someone that gets out of line
Scott Powers (1:51 PM)
James, I don't think being able to punch someone will be the criteria to bring somebody up. Beach has played all right in Rockford, especially in the past month. He has four goals and one assist this month after just recording a goal in January.
Robert (San Antonio)
I think the Hawks depth on D is going to be tested severely if Seabrook isn't back soon. Him being out puts so much pressure on Keith and the combination of Brookbank/Rozsival hasn't impressed me much. Brookbank in particular turned it over 5 or 6 times by himself last night, and Rozsival just isn't a #1 pairing guy. Solid for 15-16 minutes, but I don't want him on the ice in critical situations. I think not having Seabrook last night contributed majorly to blowing that 2 goal lead. Your thought?
Scott Powers (1:53 PM)
Robert, not having Seabrook certainly didn't help the Blackhawks last night. It doesn't sound like he's going to miss an extended amount of time, so I wouldn't worry about it too much. If that's not the case, let's talk about this again.
Nick (Buffalo Grove)
How do you think Leddy has been improving on the blue line? I know some people say last year was a down year for him, but he seems to be improving night in and night out. your thoughts?
Scott Powers (1:54 PM)
Nick, Leddy has been consistent this year. He's done a solid job alongside Brookbank or Rozsival. He's still pretty young, so his progress isn't unexpected.
Do you think Niklas Hjalmarsson's play this season has been turned around now that he and Oduya have chemistry or that he is finally just coming around this season?
Scott Powers (1:57 PM)
Peter, I think the chemistry between Oduya and Hjalmarsson has been key for both players. Both are playing well and consistently. I know Quenneville didn't want to disturb their pairing when he had to replace Seabrook yesterday.
On the PP, the Hawks seem to be waiting for a clear shot while other team place someone in front of the net (Buf Style). Do we not have anyone who can sit in front and redirect the puck?
Scott Powers (1:59 PM)
Steve, Shaw and Stalberg have that duty this season. Shaw did a nice of job of being a front-net presence on Hossa's power-play goal yesterday. They haven't redirected many pucks this year, though. I think the Blackhawks expected more of that from them.
Any truth to the Ryan O'Reily trade rumors?
Scott Powers (2:02 PM)
Michael, last I heard O'Reilly is likely headed to the Eastern Conference and a handful of teams are talking with Colorado.
Is Emery the Number 1 now? Or does Crawford get it back when he comes back?
Scott Powers (2:04 PM)
Mike, I'm pretty sure Crawford will get the No. 1 nod when he comes back. He hasn't been gone that long, and he was playing well when he left.
Glen (Chicago) [via mobile]
Any news on Steve Montador?
Scott Powers (2:05 PM)
Glen, Montador has been skating prior to practices, too. Quenneville said he's making progress, but no timetable for his return to the team yet.
Scott Powers (2:07 PM)
Thanks again to everyone for their questions. As always, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet me at espnchipowers or espnchihawks. Have a good week.