Chat with Jesse Rogers
Welcome to ESPNChicago.com! On Thursday Chicago Blackhawks reporter Jesse Rogers stops by to chat.
Rogers covers the Blackhawks for both ESPN Radio 1000 and ESPNChicago.com.
Send your questions now and join the chat Thursday at 2 p.m. CT/3 p.m. ET!
More Jesse Rogers: Blackhawks blog
Jesse Rogers (3:04 PM)
Hi all, welcome to our weekly Hawks chat...usually we do these on wed but this week its thursday...Im in sunny denver for tonight's tilt between the Hawks and the Avs...both teams finished their morning preps..same lineup as last game for Hawks...avs are hot, hawks are coming off best win of young season..they are 3-1-1..fire away, lets talk some hockey!
What game plan do you expect tonight from the hawks against the avs?
Jesse Rogers (3:05 PM)
Special teams huge..5 on 5 hawks are better...avs pp is hot so take few penalties and i think Hawks are going to win...in the box a lot they wont. Avs are really confident right now..hawks have only taken 8 minors last 3 games and killed off all of them
Any particularly amusing road roommate pairings this year? Are Toews and Kane still roomies or have they moved on?
Jesse Rogers (3:07 PM)
Still together...I dont know all the pairings but nothing jumps out at me...Seabrook and Bolland prob a little goofy in there...bunch of guys like o'donnell, mayers, etc. have their own room cause of seniority..hossa too. its early, im sure we'll get some stories soon
The popular consensus is that Detroit is will be moving to the east next season, how do the players and management feel about that? While the move might help the win/loss column I'm sure that has it would hurt at the ticket gate long term.
Jesse Rogers (3:09 PM)
Um, the hawks have sold out every game preseason, reg, and post for 3 yrs. dont think 2 less at home per year against det is going to be a big deal..I might be in the minority but I think the whole original 6 thing and even the det rivalry is getting overdone..remember, still will play them twice prob per year..so its 2 instead of 6...and now will be a chance for a stanley sup mathcup...Im not losing sleep over it..neither are players..hasnt come up once
So who on the Hawks do you think would most likely be brave enough to pose naked for ESPN Magazine's body issue?
Jesse Rogers (3:09 PM)
Mike Gray (Chi-town)
Daniel Carcillo A.K.A. "Car Bomb" has had quite the explosion lately (pun intended) He seems to be his usual self but he handles that puck quite nicely. I've heard alot of naysayers say that he would be a detriment to the team because all he has is grit...but im seeing alot more out of him than what people say. What say you?
Jesse Rogers (3:11 PM)
Agreed...nothing humbles a player more than a bad year and getting moved and maybe not getting a HUGE contract so I think he's out to prove to some people he can play the game within the rules but--pardon the experression of course--i think we'll see the car bomb explode at some point here..but hopefully it will be calculated as in when the team needs it...again, pardon the expression...its a cool nickname but not the best connotation to it
Ryan (Go #10) (Lake Zurich)
Why does it seem like the Blackhawks are an underrated team? Everywhere i go on the internet it seems like its always Flyers and Capitals. I think we are going to be an extermely hard team to beat especially when everyone starts to gel together.
Jesse Rogers (3:12 PM)
Hmm..East coast thing? Wash is out to a great start...I dont think they are underrated really. Peopl nationally love the core guys
Mike Gray (Chi-town)
Do they keep switching Kanes position? He seemed to be playing wing the other night for the most part....Considering the great play by Kane so far at Center, do you see a trade coming for a centerman? If so, who?
Jesse Rogers (3:15 PM)
No trade anytime soon. They will give this thing a chance for several months...he only switched when they doublw shift him on the 4th line or what not..he is their 2nd line center..no doubt..they will give him a chance to grow as well as kruger in the 4th line role...love how kruger is coming along as well as Kane...bowman said to me on the eve of the season he didnt understand why center was such a bone of contention with me and now Im seeing why he wasnt losing sleep BUT he didnt know for sure this would work...heck,like a week ago, kruger was doing nothing so things changed quickly at that position
Tim (Wicker Park)
Jesse, aside from Montador/Campoli, how great is Stan's offseason looking a couple weeks into the season? I was a very big doubter of Carcillo (and would still probably prefer Burish) but the kid can skate, has put up points, and has used some discretion (I'm fine w/ the penalty to deny a good Coyote opportunity), Mayers, O'Donnell filling their roles very well. Still very early, but yea, I'm eating some crow.
Jesse Rogers (3:17 PM)
I am too though the only thing I ever said was "right plan but was it excuted with the right players." apparently it has been. other than opening night where all those guys were quiet...VERY PLEASANT surprise with both Mayers and O'Donnell...carcillo too...so yes, they have been right on (so far) from kane at center to off season acquisitions
Mike Gray (Chi-town)
How come Niklas Hjalmarsson hasn't hit the stat sheet yet? Does he just not have an offensive game? Last year he was supposed to "break out" and have a great season, and you think with the trade of Brian Campbell, this would open things up for him for THIS season, but im seeing Nick Leddy around the puck more often than hjalmmarson. Whats up with this?
Jesse Rogers (3:18 PM)
Yeah, it might just not be his game...and maybe they have enough around him that he doesnt have to contribute on offense...hes a nice player who might be a bit overpaid right now but that was due to the offer sheet...the offense just isnt there..at least not on this team
I got Crawford in fantasy round 6. Steal, right?
Jesse Rogers (3:19 PM)
Ive never played fantasy but yes, love the kid
Enough of Mike Gray ((Chi-Town))
Can you answer anymore of his questions? He has submitted 3 already. How bout somebody else?
Jesse Rogers (3:20 PM)
Sorry, never look at the name just punch up the question...
JR- Not a question... but a suggestion. Go to Osteria Marco in Denver. Food is delicious.
Jesse Rogers (3:20 PM)
Just cause your brought it up Im at Mcormicks right now, delicious. Its beautiful in Denver today. Picture perfect
Hawks Draft (GM's Office)
Who would you take first if you were building a team.....Toews or Kane?
Jesse Rogers (3:21 PM)
Not even a question..and no slight to 88.
Is Brunette too slow to play with Toews and Sharp?
Jesse Rogers (3:21 PM)
Remains to be seen. I dont think so...but lets give it a little more time
Mike Gray Jr. ((Chi-Town))
Do you see Kaner and Toews as Hawks for life?
Jesse Rogers (3:23 PM)
Id be stupid if I said yes or no either way right now..anything can happen..but could I see a Modano type thing where one goes to Buffalo and the other winnipeg, yes but I would still say very doubtful..especially toews. very doubtful
who is your pick to click for tonight?
Jesse Rogers (3:23 PM)
Ill go with frolik...on the verge of getting some serious points
David's Older Brother (NW Suburbs)
My brother David thinks the Hawks are good enough to go far, but not good enough to hit Cup Contender Status. Is he right, or should I punch him in the stomach?
Jesse Rogers (3:24 PM)
Even if hes right, punch him. Hes your bro. Thats what they are there for. They are contenders...but thats a broad statement
Will we be seeing Ben Smith at all? How is his prognosis? Is it only Kruger faulting that can rehash Smiths appearance in teh lineup/
Jesse Rogers (3:26 PM)
Yeah, unless there is a matchup thing or something, Kruger would have to play his way down or maybe another injury...
Tim (A random highrise)
Jesse, we've been piling on shots, including the power play. Hockey is a weird game where sometimes they just don't fall. So far I think we're something like 3 for 18 on the man advantage. Are they making adjustments or do they feel we'll just start scoring?
Jesse Rogers (3:27 PM)
making small adjustments but they like what they are doing except they want to shoot more..that starts the chaos...rebound comes out and def starts chasing creating new shooting lanes...
Gvich (Old Town)
Are you surprised at how dependable O'Donnell has been?
Jesse Rogers (3:28 PM)
A little bit. Knew he's be slow but veteran thing is working for him..he knows where to go..once in a while the slow thing will hurt him but rarely so far
Who is starting in net tonight?
Jesse Rogers (3:29 PM)
I was laughing because I remember reading your blog the first week of the season assessing the Kane at center as "he won?t be downright horrendous" and then a week later being almost sold on it. That was a quick 180 degree turnaround. Were you getting hate mail or something?
Jesse Rogers (3:30 PM)
Not at all...most people agreed...experts, former players, but we all underestimated him...nice to be wrong abnout something like that..COULD turn out to be the story of the season but long way to go
Brady (Rolling Meadows)
The Blackhawks have been faster than pretty much everyone over the last few years. Has Q always stressed speed?
Jesse Rogers (3:32 PM)
Its funny you ask that today because this morning's practice was like at game speed...as fast as Ive seen..I asked O'Donnell about it this morn and I dont think its a Q thing as much as a personnell thing...these guys want to go, go, go. O'Donnell liked it cause he said if he gets beat its only practice and either way, it prepares him cause who's tougher on a 2 on 1 then kane and toews?
Bryan C (Columbus)
I think the "Is Kane good enough at center?" questions can be laid to rest. New question: Is the top line good enough without Kane? Kane seems to be the solution to any line or position. Are Toews and Sharp missing him too much?
Jesse Rogers (3:34 PM)
I love this question..been getting it a lot..for 4 years every winger this side of Luc Robitaille wanted to play with Toews...You notice Hossa's numbers with Toews to start last season then when Kane moved there...Kane is NOT the key..Toews is..just because one is hotter than the other in a small sample size doesnt mean anything...Toews doesnt NEED kane but of course it doesnt suck to have him on the line..
JK (St. Louis)
Hey Jesse, I don't want to complain too much considering how the Hawks have looked thus far, but I don't like the Ben Smith to Rockford move. I know he's one of the easiest contracts to move, but why carry 8 defensemen? I think Kane and/or Hossa getting double shifts could be detrimental down the road. Any chance Benny comes back up some time soon (preferably without injury leading to his call up)?
Jesse Rogers (3:36 PM)
Its about playing time...Smith is young and coming off an injury..let him play until needed up here...could be tomorrow or next week but they are stacked when healthy..now, is he a better "prospect" or even player than say stalberg right now..I dont know but no waivers as opposed to waivers plays a part..so do two-way contracts, etc. so all things kind of even this makes sense for now
Steve G (Northbrook)
I'm kind of wondering why Q has Keith and Leddy paired up together. I didn't catch much of the other games, but against Boston and Phoenix Leddy looks out of position and not sure where to go. Since both Keith and Leddy aren't the most positionally sound d-men wouldn't it make a little more sense to have those two split up to play with either Seabrook or Hammer.
Jesse Rogers (3:38 PM)
You can make a case either way in regards to this issue. Some skating d-men like to be paired with skating d-men...for example, campoli and campbell...I asked leddy the other day and he said he prefferd a skating guy..they can read and play off each other--at least in theory...not syaing anything is set in stone and I could make the case the other way as well but for now they are trying this and I understand it
Ryan (Tinley Park)
JR - Any chance at all we see Saad or Pirri recalled this season? I realize they're both pretty low on the list but exciting young players.
Jesse Rogers (3:39 PM)
Saad cannot be recalled unless there is a emergency so no go there...Pirri easily could be if there are injuries or kruger struggles..but morin and smith are there as well..depends on what they need
We know Q will shuffle lines this year, maybe as early as tonight if things don't go the Hawks way, but I have a hard time believing Frolik-Bolland-Bickell will be switched up. Surprised how effective they've been?
Jesse Rogers (3:41 PM)
Not really..i documented this in a blog recently but it seems since bolland came into his own, anyone he plays with lifts his game...havlat several yrs ago, ladd and steeg the year they won the cup, and now Bick and frolik..I think thats why Q put that trio together..think about it...bickell and frolik were just "guys" last year despite some scoring from Bickell...now they are maximizes their talents with bolland
I'm visiting my brother in Chicago soon. What's the best place for pizza and best area to sit in the United Center?
Jesse Rogers (3:41 PM)
Pizza..too many to name but i like either last row in 100 or anywhere in 200
tony t (manteno)
should the Hawks try to get john madden, Iknow he just signed with the Wolves but do they have any cap space let
Jesse Rogers (3:42 PM)
They have plenty of space but right now they are fine at center...would take injuries and a need for another veteran..they kicked the tires on him in offseason but liked kruger and pirri better
Mark my words, Jesse... This team will have more points than the Cup team come year's end. Only question i whether they get it done in the playoffs.
Jesse Rogers (3:43 PM)
I dont disagree really...I thought they would have a huge regular season..backed off a little cause just wasnt sure of the older additions but simply loved the core with rest and renewed hunger
Wait, when you say, "yes but I would still say very doubtful..especially towes. very doubtful" are you saying that you could see either player going home at the end of his career, but that you think that is less likely than staying in Chicago? And that you particularly think Tazer is a Hawk for life? I just want to be clear on whether very doubtful means doubtful they stay a Hawk for life or doubtful they leave...
Jesse Rogers (3:44 PM)
Sorry if I was unclear...I would be surprised if Toews wasnt a Hawk for life..a little less surprised on Kane...but we all know anything can happen...
Tim (Evergreen Park)
Are you surprised that 13 has not dropped the gloves? And does O'brien still hate the hawks?
Jesse Rogers (3:45 PM)
Give me a chance to plug my blog...go there after this chat..I did a one on one interview with o'brien this morn...he was really good. you can hear it unedited in my blog...he doesnt hat them but loves the rivalry...and a little surprised about carcillo but not shocked..he wants to redeem himself from a bad yr last season
Rostislav Olesz a healthy scratch almost every game, do you see him being sent to Rockford via waivers anytime soon? And if so, who will the Hawks bring up? Ben Smith?
Jesse Rogers (3:47 PM)
Again, I think if someone is going to sit up here its going to be Olesz as opposed to Smith..they didnt "invest: in olesz.he was the throw in, in the campbell deal..they want smith to develop..just a numbers game right now...is there any doubt if he was healthy the whole preseason he beats out kruger? I dont think so...but could it happen? yes. I just think they want smith to play some
Biggest surprise on the Hawks so far this season?
Jesse Rogers (3:48 PM)
Kane success at center
Whos your most underrated player right now?
Jesse Rogers (3:49 PM)
I guess Mayers...does a lot of little things..maybe Leddy..other than the tying goal against boston..did nothing there but those 2
WHOA WHOA WHOA. You say, "Kane is NOT the key..Toews is".Can't they BOTH be the key? Isn't that basically the reasoning for splitting them up and putting Kane in a position to play with Hossa?
Jesse Rogers (3:50 PM)
of course, splitting hairs there some...i just kind of laugh when people have asked me "does toews NEED kane." but you are right, they are 1 and 1a
so far keith has been a hybrid of his last two seasons, I have seen him make plays that remind me of 09-10, but also awful plays that like last year...which do you think we will see more often?
Jesse Rogers (3:52 PM)
Great point and I would agree...Man, I like the kid. I dont root often but if I was rooting for a guy to return to form, its him. It hurt what went on last yr. You could tell..And he cares which should mean something..Ill give him the benefit of the doubt..once he and leddy feel more comfortable he'll be more of the old keith...hes very "particular" I think. needs to be comfy..equipment, partner, forwards in front of him...thats my take at least
Yes, a slow-starting Toews is still better than the vast majority of NHL players. I also know that he is typically a slower starter points wise. Do you think that he will miss Kane on the 1st line and have a down points year because of it?
Jesse Rogers (3:53 PM)
I mean of course he COULD miss kane in that respect because there is no right winger on the team thats bette thats not named hossa...think about it, for the first time in yrs he doesnt have ONE of those 2 on his line so its boundto affect some...but not enough to turn it into a "bad" year
Don (Deerfield, IL)
Will Carcillo be in line-up tonight?
Jesse Rogers (3:53 PM)
yes, same lineup as last game in phx
I know this is early, but which Hawks are in a contract year now?
Jesse Rogers (3:54 PM)
All the guys they signed this past year are up..none of the big names..
Taylor (Behind you)
How has Morin looked since getting back on the ice?
Jesse Rogers (3:55 PM)
From what I hear pretty good. He scored twice in first two games
Dan K (Chicago )
Where does Dylan Olsen rank in terms of prospecs? I kinda of have the impression he's a minature Duncan Keith in the making. In terms of good skater, solid D and can move the puck. What his future look like?
Jesse Rogers (3:56 PM)
Kind of the other way around..Olsen is too big to be a minature anything! He's next on the young guy on D depth chart...he cant skate like Keith though..but I've liked him for a while
Greg (Oak Forest)
I know it's a long shot, but why shouldn't Dave Bolland get some pub for the Selke Trophy? If he stays healthy and on pace, he could score 30 goals and he already has the reputation as a lockdown defensive center.
Jesse Rogers (3:57 PM)
He will. he absolutely will..give it time
How about Tony Amonte with Roenick on Versus?! Good to see another former great getting some air-time!
Jesse Rogers (3:57 PM)
love 'em both but think I had a headache after watching!
Avalanche have gotten off to a hot start. What do the Hawks need to do over this home and home to cool them off?
Jesse Rogers (3:58 PM)
Stay out of the box. Thats it
Any possibility in Hawks putting out feelers on Keith's trade value? I am tired of the mistakes, tired of him waiting for the forward to get right up on him before he does his stutter step to barely get there, tired of him period. Why don't we trade him while he hasnt completely ruined his trade value and get something in return. Trade Keith and this team gets even better. And if you don't think that you are a Homer.
Jesse Rogers (3:59 PM)
Think you are being a little harsh, really do...his bar is so high...think of D-men in the league..there are only a few elite..even if you dont think he is elite anymore or what not..hes still one notch below and with a cap hit of "only" 5 mil, thats not so bad
M. Gadhafi (Libya)
It seemed like the TV crew covering the game Tuesday against Phoenix felt it was a dominating performance, which it was in a lot of terms, but I still felt the Hawks played rather sloppy and if Labarbera would find a trapper that he could actually close, that game may not have been the blowout it was. Not to mention that missed empty netter that the Yotes could have scored SH. Am I just being too picky? Your thoughts?
Jesse Rogers (4:00 PM)
Think you are being picky...shots on goal tell a story a lot of time...35-16 means the hawks had the puck a ton more...simple as that..have the puck more and good things will come..I thought it was dominating as well...u are right about the goalie..one hawk simply told me yesterday, "they're going to miss Bryzgalov" cant argue
Erik (SF, CA)
Jesse - what indications are there that fans continue to see the team that played Tuesday, and not the team that showed up (or didn't) for the 3rd period of the Boston game, which was eerily similar to last season's team?
Jesse Rogers (4:01 PM)
Long year..those games on tues dont always happen but listen out of the 5 games..only been a few bad periods...3rd against boston and some in dallas opener...we know they are good, just waiting to see how good
Jackson (Chicago )
Will the Hawks regret signing Marian Hossa to that huge contract in 3 years much like the Cubs regret signing Alfonso Soriano to a huge contract? Do you think he may retire before his contract runs out?
Jesse Rogers (4:03 PM)
I dont think they will regert it if they win another cup or two..who cares after that? I think he'll turn into a 3rd line (modano like) player in his waning yrs. Of course at 40 the contract will suck but enjoy the rise while these guys are in their prime..
What happened to Saad. He was in the top line opening night against Dallas and nothing since. What's the scoop?
Jesse Rogers (4:05 PM)
He had a taste..little chance he was ever going to stay...thats the right way to do it..put him with good players, give him best chance to succeed and then send down until ready..which could be next year. no issues..this team is looking for a cup not bringing along a 18 year old
Mike (Des Plaines)
About the Amonte thing what happened to him he looks like he gained 50 pounds?
Jesse Rogers (4:05 PM)
Yikes, I thought so too...maybe the camera
On the PP last year, the bread and butter was the back door pass to Sharp. In a game this year, Eddie O highlighted how opposing D men come down to the crease and sprawl on the ice to close the passing lane. How are the Hawks going to get around this? They haven't been that effective so far this year and the backdoor has been closed
Jesse Rogers (4:07 PM)
He has to get the puck from the other D-man if the back door is closed...it means kane goes up to keith and over to sharp but has to happen quick so goalie still moving...with them concentrating on taking the pass away through the middle there the top D man should be open for shot or pass...seabrook could end up there on first unit..he has the best point shot
If I remember correctly, Hossa/Toews cooled off a lot after the initial start of the season last year so Q put Kane on the top line again. Also I'll disagree that Kane needs Toews to be succesful.
Jesse Rogers (4:08 PM)
Im not saying one HAS to have the other..they are both really good and make others better...and it was Kane last yr that was doing very little until he was put with toews..no doubt there
Because he is so amazing, will Tebow be in goal tonight for the Avs before heading to Miami for the Broncos game?
Jesse Rogers (4:08 PM)
You say most agreed with you regarding Kane at center. Does that include his teammates?
Jesse Rogers (4:09 PM)
I think so..the best was asking Hossa about it..he was hemming and hawing..was funny...not hes much more confident answering that question
Tim (La Grange Park)
I am really pleased with the chemistry this team has already developed on the ice. They seem like a much more cohesive unit than last year. Each player seems to have a plan with the puck. If this continues, Stan Bowman will have to get a lot of credit...no?
Jesse Rogers (4:11 PM)
yes, he will...Q too. I like that it looks like its coming quicker than last year. these vets "know they're way around a NHL locker room" as sharp likes to say
Jesse Rogers (4:13 PM)
Thats it for today. Appreciate it all. Great questions. So much to talk about. follow me on twitter @espnchihawks for all the news and of course my blog before and after games...a video preview of me and Eddie O should be in my blog this afternoon/evening..and of course the one on one interview with avs d-man shane o'brien...enjoy the game..talk to ya on twitter tonight and thanks again...next week, we'll be back on wed for hawks chat