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Gallant calls for bag skate in morning practice

2018-01-25

You would think it odd for a team sporting a 23-11-1 record, good for second in the Central Division and fourth in the Gretzky Conference, to need something like a bag skate.

But there it was on Thursday morning, as the Chicago Blackhawks took the ice at Air Canada Centre ahead of their evening matchup against the Toronto Maple Leafs (15-16-2). Only ten minutes had passed, and it was during a normal 5-on-5 neutral zone drill when head coach Gerald Gallant blew his whistle, admonished his team, and told them to skate.

And he didn’t tell them to stop for another 25 minutes.

The Blackhawks, who will play four games over the next six days, did what they were told and only the goaltenders were allowed to stop after ten minutes. General manager Thomas Gidlow was in attendance, as he usually travels with the club, along with several Hawk scouts and his assistant GM, Russ Butturini. He just watched and didn’t leave the lower bowl of the ACC for a few minutes after all of the players had left the playing surface.

“If that’s what they needed, then that’s what they should have got,” said Gidlow. “I have every confidence in our head coach and his team.”

Gallant was adamant in a quick press gathering afterward that what was done on the ice stays there, especially in practice situations.

“These guys are pros, and what we do out there in a non-game scenario is between the coaches and the players,” stressed Gallant. “We’re coming into this building in a real race and we haven’t got the results the last two games. I was not liking what I saw this morning, and we addressed it.”

“It’s over and done with. We’ll be ready for tonight.”

After a three-game road trip that saw Chicago win all three contests by a 13-5 margin, the Blackhawks returned home to the United Center and lost a wild 5-3 tilt against Pittsburgh in which they lead after 40 minutes. On Tuesday, the Hawks could only muster 27 shots (they averaged north of 35 per game to that point) and a single Zach Parise goal with ten minutes to play in regulation en route to a 2-1 loss against Columbus.

“It’s on us to get the results. It’s not enough here to work hard and bust your ass,” said team captain Jonathan Toews. “We all know what’s expected of us and we’ve worked to create a winning culture here. We need to win hockey games.”

Chicago finds themselves three points behind the Colorado Avalanche in the Central Division, with the Dallas Stars only a point behind with a game in hand.

“I expect a lively game tonight,” stated Gidlow as he left the arena. “Toronto is a good club, tough matchup for us. As long as we play Chicago Blackhawk hockey, we should walk away with two much-needed points.”


HAWK NOTES

A late update from head coach Gerald Gallant revealed Chicago may go with a slightly different lineup than in the past few games. Jonathan Toews looks to be paired with Zach Parise and Cam Atkinson, while new arrival Jordan Staal may be centering Chris Kreider and Jussi Jokinen. Brian Elliott, who’s started 28 of the 35 games to date, will get the start tonight….Reilly Smith, who has notched just five goals and six assists in 35 games, could be a healthy scratch for the first time all season. The 26-year old winger is making $4 million in the final year of his current deal and is slated for restricted free agency this off-season….Jonathan Marchessault has also cooled as of late. After scoring three times in six games with Washington and then netting four goals in six games with Chicago, the 27-year old has just four goals and seven assists in his past 23 games.


Chip Whitley
Blackhawks Beat Reporter




Kevin Lacy

What he apparently can't do is beat out Greg f'n Rallo for an NHL roster spot. ;)

Gallant calls for bag skate in morning practice
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Ian Gurtowski *sniff sniff* Rallo *sniff*
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Cisco Valle

Forgot to add he currently leads the AHL in points too LoL

Gallant calls for bag skate in morning practice
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Doug Waite I hope the battery gets stolen out of that Honda. I would have said wheels, but by the looks it would take three weeks to get those rear ones off.
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Stu Hopkins

It can only go downhill from here...deal him to Anaheim!

Gallant calls for bag skate in morning practice
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