Shocked, Disappointed, Angry. Blackhawks fall to the Predators, 4-1, and are swept out of the first round. Their season has come to an end. I didn’t expect this to happen.
The Blackhawks and Predators were scoreless after one period. Predators were up 11-7 in shots on goal. Schmaltz and Panarin had quality chances late in the period, but there weren’t many in the first 20 minutes. Patrick Kane played a game-high 8:02 in the first period. Blackhawks were just outworked. Puck management issues. Not checking and puck support. Tanner Kero and Marcus Kruger were a combined 7-0 at the faceoff circle in the first period. Rest of the team was 2-7.
Blackhawks trailed the Predators 1-0 at the end of Period 2. Both teams were tied with 20 shots on goal each. Blackhawks gave Rinne way too many opportunities to play the puck. Hawks had 26 shot attempts (13 on goal) in the second period. Predators had 15 attempts (nine on goal). Patrick Kane leads all skaters with 16:12 of ice time and four shots on goal through two periods.
Roman Josi scored two goals while Colton Sissons and Viktor Arvidsson each had a goal and an assist. Jonathan Toews scored late in the third period for the Hawks but it wasn’t enough. Jonathan Toews’ first goal since Game 5 of the 2015 Final. Toews had been held without a goal for 12 straight postseason games. First sweep of the Blackhawks in a playoff series since 1993. Chicago outscored by a 13-3 margin in the four games. Passes were off, couldn’t get it out of the zone, nobody wanted to take any shots, awful series overall. Blackhawks will exit the postseason in the first round for the second year in a row, scored 244 goals during the regular season, but their offense went dry in their opening round series. It was just a very disappointing. I’m completely shocked. They had no momentum in the entire series. Speed killed them. First place in the West, 50 wins, 109 pts. They had three goals in four games in the playoffs. First sweep since 1993.