Makar's Ridiculous Goal, Post Love, Team Canada Rumors, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

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Makar’s Ridiculous Goal, Post Love, Team Canada Rumors, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

Chicago Blackhawks

The Blackhawks were close, real close, last night to topping one of the best teams in the NHL with a three-goal comeback that would have snapped a four-game losing streak. But with a missed call or two and a ridiculous goal from Cale Makar in overtime, the Blackhawks now find themselves on a five-game skid, having a 0-2-3 record in that time.

•   Yes, we are going to be seeing this Cale Makar goal for a long, long time.

•   Kirby Dach was tasked with covering Makar on the play, which would never be an easy task. But for Dach, who is not as defensively sound as Makar is offensively gifted, there was little he could have done on the play to stop him. Makar is unreal, and it’s likely he’s only going to get better if that’s even possible.

•   Before the goal, Dach lost one of his three faceoffs in overtime, part of losing 14-of-22 draws on the night.

•   The problem is that Dach is not a checking center. He’s not even a center if you ask me. I know Toews cannot take every faceoff, but in overtime against the Avalanche, you have to be playing your most reliable players.

•   Toews had one of his best games of the season last night, getting the first of the Blackhawks’ three goals in the comeback effort and nearly getting the game-winner in overtime.

•   He also won 13-of-23 faceoffs and was second on the team in individual expected goals-for (0.4), only behind Alex DeBrincat (0.61).

•   Speaking of DeBrincat, he and Patrick Kane hooked up twice on the same powerplay opportunity to get the game even and then give the Blackhawks the lead early in the third period with his 19th and 20th goals of the season.

•   But, you know, he’s too small, right?

•   I’ve said it before, and I’ll repeat it, DeBrincat’s next contract is going to be at least $10M per season, and he’ll be worth it.

•   Even with allowing two goals in the opening period, the Blackhawks could have been in much worse shape last night had Marc-André Fleury not come up with some big saves. It was his first action since before the Christmas Holiday break after landing on Chicago’s COVID protocol list.

•   He also had some help from his posts again last night, and of course, he had to show his appreciation. Even if the play was continuing.

•   It was a big night for the posts…

•   Always show your posts some love. You never know when you’ll need them next.

•   Good to see former Blackhawks goaltender and 2015 Stanley Cup Champion Scott Darling in the crowd last night.

•   A crowd that was understandably low in attendance last night.

•   Still, good to see those in attendance got to have some memorable moments, even when dealing with COVID complications in the world.

•   That’s a memory they won’t soon forget. Hell, that would be cool even for a grown man like me.

•   Speaking of memorable moments, the first career NHL goal for Oskar Steen was a unique one…

•   Sure, that counts, but Andrew Shaw’s head-butt goal in the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs doesn’t?

•   Sonny Milano scored the goal on what has become known as the “Zegras” goal, so maybe he was hoping for some credit on his attempt to set up the goal again last night. Unfortunately, no one was ready for it…

•   “A” for effort, at least.

•   With the NHL out of the Winter Olympics, countries are now looking for non-NHL players to send in their place. Last night, The Athletic’s Scott Wheeler worked to confirm several Canadian players that would be on the long list for Team Canada.

•   Former Blackhawks defenseman Cody Franson is in the mix.

•   So is former Blackhawks and IceHogs goaltender Matt Tomkins.

•   It will be interesting to see which former or future, or never-were NHL players make up the rosters for the Winter Olympics. If you ask me, leave the Olympics to the amateurs again, and make the World Cup of Hockey the “Best vs. Best” tournament the NHL players participate in.

•   Play the tournament in the summer before the NHL preseason begins with the NHL and NHLPA controlling every tournament aspect. The ratings, I’m sure, would be incredible.

•   Speaking of ratings, even though I thought the NHL scheduling nine games on New Year’s Day would take away from the Winter Classic, I was wrong…

•   Good for the NHL, but I’m sure after last night’s ESPN+/Hulu-only broadcast of the Blackhawks game, some of you could care less since games are getting blacked-out or harder to watch. Unfortunately, leagues moving to put games on streaming services is the future of broadcasting, whether it’s swift or not.

•   Ending today with North American officiating treasure Wes McCauley. He’s done it again.

•   That will do it for today. I hope you all stay warm and enjoy your Wednesday!



Author: Mario Tirabassi

Mario Tirabassi is a writer for Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Mario_Tirabassi.