On Friday, the Chicago Blackhawks lost 5-2 in Calgary. On Saturday, they lost 9-2 in Edmonton. After that, they partied in Las Vegas.
OK, the timing wasn’t great, but what was Joel Quenneville supposed to do? Cancel Vegas? You don’t cancel Vegas. That’s how mutinies start.
Chicago continues its six-game road trip tonight in San Jose against the red-hot Sharks. Will the Blackhawks be refreshed and ready to go?
‘Hawks forward Patrick Kane has experience balancing an active social life with playing hockey for a living. What does he think?
“We had our fun, and these last few games make you want to play even more,” Kane told CSNChicago.com. “We’ll come out with a pretty good effort (in San Jose), way better than the last two.”
Marian Hossa concurred: “We had that time to rethink, recharge and get our working boots on again.”
You know, I’ve lost a pile of money, eaten prime rib at 5am, and tried to get into the wrong hotel room for 20 minutes in Vegas, but I can’t say I’ve ever “recharged” in that place.
Maybe Hossa went to Napa instead.
Well, the NHL’s two new initiatives for ’15-16 seem to be going swimmingly.
Not long after Ottawa successfully made the second-ever coach’s challenge, fans got their first look at 3-on-3 overtime.
And what a look it was.
In the span of 137 seconds, the Tampa Bay Lightning and Philadelphia Flyers combined for eight shots on goal, a few breakaways, some tremendous saves — including one on a penalty shot — and, finally, Jason Garrison‘s game-winning goal on a breakaway from center, giving the Bolts a 3-2 win.
It was, in a word, fun.
Lots of fun.
A quick sampling of reviews:
Of course, not everybody was a fan:
Now, to temper things a bit — this was the first time we’ve seen 3-on-3 with something on the line, so there was a novelty factor at play. There’s also no guaranteeing future OT sessions will be as exciting as this.
But none of that takes away from the fact 3-on-3 made for appointment viewing, and immense entertainment value. The prospect of future games like this? That’s pretty exciting.
Didn’t take long for Alex Burmistrov to make his presence felt — though not in a good way.
Burmistrov, playing in his first game for the Jets after a two-year stint in Russia, delivered a questionable elbow to the head of Boston’s Patrice Bergeron late in the first period of Thursday’s season-opener:
Burmistrov received a two-minute minor for an illegal check to the head, while Bergeron received a matching minor for roughing (retaliating for the elbow, specifically).
The Bruins went into the intermission leading 1-0, and have yet to update Bergeron’s status.
Update: Bergeron stayed in the game, but B’s head coach Claude Julien was none too pleased with the hit. Following the game, he called for the NHL’s Department of Player Safety to look at it…