You could make the argument that the only reason I'm writing this is so that the Game 2 recap will be our 300th post. I wouldn't put up much of a fight.
Practice lines from MacLeod:
Highlights from today include that Leino and (gasp) Lilja skated with the team. Lilja still has to be cleared before playing, but I still maintain the belief that he's done for the year. I hope I'm wrong.
I'd be very interested in seeing what Leino has to offer in this series. I liked the idea of Abdelkader's style facing the Ducks, and I like the idea of Leino geting into some open spaces against the Hawks.
But MacLeod speculates in the comments of his post that he won't see the ice tomorrow night.
Regarding our thoughts in the last post about Kane and Toews' ice times, The Fifth Feather had an interesting note:
Apparently Mike Milbury didn’t watch many Blackhawks games on his Centre Ice package because if he did, he wouldn’t have been so shocked about Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane’s collective ice times. In between the 2nd and 3rd period, Milbury sounded like a pissed off Pee Wee mom. Anyone who was watched the Hawks this year knows this is nothing out of the ordinary. This is the one nice thing about having Edzo on the broadcast. He can tell Milbury and Pierre Macguire they’re idiots. Which he basically did today on multiple occasions.
I can't claim to have seen every Hawk game this year, but this is what the Internet is for. I think.
The Hawk duo is (are? Oh fuck it) playing about three minutes less per game than they were in the regular season, so there does seem to be a difference there. In the regular season, Kane and Toews were Chicago's icetime leaders among forwards, but that time has visibly been cut, whether that be from fatigue or whatever. Toews has yet to crack 18 minutes in any playoff game after averaging 18+ during the regular season. He'll be Yzerman though, give it time.
That said, it would seem entirely reasonable that they would want to conserve their young stars when they don't know how their bodies will respond as the number of games start to pile up. But under that scenario, this series plays right into the Wings' hands. In any event I thought it interesting to see a Hawk fan perspective.