Saturday, October 31, 2015

Game 9 - A Return To The Windy City

Yes, I know I'm a week behind.  The good news is that the only game I still have to watch is the St. Louis games.  When the Lightning play on a national channel it really screws with my time line as I have to wait 48 hours to watch the replay - the downfall of being a cord-cutter.

Game: 9
Opponent: at Chicago
Did I watch Live?: Nope
Don't You Live in Chicago?: Yup
Why Didn't You Just Go To The Game?: Games are crazy expensive up here. I'm going to use that money to go to another Lightning road game
Which One?: It's a surprise
Really?: Yup.
Did I watch on replay?:Yes I did. Eventually
Three Stars: 3. Jonathan Toews 2. Corey Crawford 1. Kristers Gudlevskis
Worst Play: Every time Blackhawks announcer Pat Foley tried to say Gudlevskis

Matt Carle is not impressed with Andrew Shaw's air guitar solo.


They honestly didn't play too bad. Sure they lost 1-0 in overtime, but the Lightning managed to pick up a point against a good team on the road while playing the second game of a back-to-back. So yeah, I'll take it.

The first period was actually a pretty good period for the Lightning. They dictated the play, forced penalties by skating hard and then just couldn't convert (they would go 0-4 on the power play for the game, but you probably guessed that since they got shut out).

About five minutes into the second period, their long travel seemed to catch up to them. The Blackhawks started to drive possession and held the Lightning to only 4 shots. Gudlevskis, in his season debut, held down the fort. He made several key stops (10 in all that period) to keep the defending Stanley Cup champs off the scoreboard. The Latvian netminder looked much, much better than he did in training camp.

Sadly it wasn't enough (much like his performance for Latvia in the Olympics a few years ago) and Johnathan Toews,who is way to serious for all of that end-to-end nonsense we've seen in overtime so far, knocked in his own rebound less than a minute into the extra session.

The Lightning's struggles continue in the Windy City, luckily they don't have to make another stop there this season.

Jo or Johnny:

Drouin was held off the score sheet once again and is now riding a four-game scoreless streak. He didn't play bad, but his entire line was quite ineffective against the Blackhawks. He might benefit the most on the team once The Triplets get rolling. If they find their groove, teams might pull the top defensive pairings off of the Stamkos line and Drouin might see some more open ice. Meanwhile Gaudreau keeps rolling along, picking up two more points against the Red Wings.  

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