Young Hawks beat veteran Flames at their own game
Some random thoughts and observations on the Blackhawks ousting the Flames in six:
• The veteran-heavy Flames were supposed to have the edge in grit, but it was the young Hawks who established the physical tone throughout the series. Guys like
• The Flames scored once on 44 shots in Game 6 on Monday night. The Hawks: four times on 16, including two of their first three.
• Calgary had the right idea in their struggle to solve Khabibulin, firing pucks on the net from all over the ice. Problem was, they didn't follow up on most of them. The Bulin Wall had no problem stopping the long-distance bombs or odd angle prayers, and when he did cough up a beefy rebound (and there were a bunch of those in the first) there were no red sweaters within striking distance. That was the real difference in the game -- the ability of the Hawks' defense to minimize quality scoring chances.
• Moving Byfuglien to the checking line for this series led to the best six-game stretch of his career. He was pressing less, and seemed more confident in the role.
• Forget how well
• He scored his first goal in 15 games, but any chance that
• Best line of the week (courtesy of several readers): Expect
• Iginla was given nearly 25 minutes of ice but was a non-factor in the do-or-die game. Credit Seabrook and
• In the absence of
• Not much solace at this point, but Flames fans have to love what they saw out of