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An Un-Hully Alliance: Q & A with City on the Take

My asshole friend Jim writes about the Blackhawks. We ask each other asshole questions, and give each other asshole answers.

Above: Alexander Steen gives Bryan Bickell the traditional greeting of the Blues-Blackhawks rivalry.
Above: Alexander Steen gives Bryan Bickell the traditional greeting of the Blues-Blackhawks rivalry.
Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

Perhaps you've heard there's a game tonight?

The Blues will look to harvest the best antibiotics known to man - Andrew Shaw's tears - when they play Those Fuckers Up North tonight at Scottrade. In preparation, I asked my asshole friend, Blackhawks/Chicago Sports blogger Jim Kress of City On The Take, a few questions, to refresh our collective memories of the team that won't get out of our heads no matter how much self-medicating we do. In exchange, I answered a few for him - be sure to check out them out over on his site, because that's how this shit works. (And by the way, a much better name for a blog about Chicago sports would be "City on the Lake," but hey, whatevs.)


SLGT: Stan Bowman pulled off arguably the biggest heist of the summer by brainwashing Brad Richards to sign for only $2 million. How has he done filling that 2nd-line center hole you guys always keep bitching about as if it were an actual problem?

JK: Brad Richards was a good and bad sign in my opinion. Good in that he is a quality player that Bowman signed for a very good deal. Bad in that it didn't help the Blackhawks salary cap situation and it forced Bowman to trade away a young capable defenseman (Nick Leddy) for scrap pieces. Richards has yet to play the actual "2nd line center" role for the Hawks. For the majority of the season he has been centering either Bryan Bickell and Brandon Saad or Bickell and Ben Smith . The 2nd line center problem is still a problem in that 3rd line Winger Andrew Shaw is currently centering Patrick Kane and Saad/Versteeg. Shaw absolutely does not belong on the 2nd line C with Kane. The answer for that position is still sitting and waiting in Rockford with Teuvo Teravainen. Of course I believe for defensive responsibilities the lines would look completely different with Teuvo at 2C. If he were there I believe the top two lines should look like Saad-Toews-Kane

SLGT: Corey Crawford has been out the last 2 games with an "upper-body injury." If he should miss again tonight, will Antti Raanta be hilariously bad or just disappointing?

JK: Antti Raanta is a backup goalie. More so than that, he is a 25 year old back-up goalie in his first full season in the NHL. The kid net-minder has shown flashes of excellence in this short season and last year. In his first NHL start this year he recorded a 32 save shutout. He is prone to make mistakes given his age and experience, but I don't believe there is anything he could do to disappoint Hawks fans. He hasn't exactly given anything to Hawks fans to get their hopes up to begin with. Again, he's a back-up. A 25 year old back-up.

SLGT: 6 games is a small sample size for sure, but so far Marian Hossa has as many points as Dan Carcillo. What's up with that? Does this mean Hossa will start taking stupid penalties for trying to injure opponents and get himself suspended now too?

JK: I believe you already answered this question in your own initial statement. 6 games is in fact a microscopic sample size. If we went with a 6 game season, Darcy Kuemper would be the NHL Vezina Trophy winner and the Predators would win the Central (HA!). I will be the first to admit I strongly dislike Dan Carcillo and the overall move to bring him back to Chicago. He has played well (surprisingly), but if his NHL career will show otherwise, this strong start will blow up in his face with Hindenburg like proportions. Hossa has always been a bit of a slow starter, like the Hawks captain Toews. He's 4 points away from 1,000 and I believe that might be weighing on his mind a bit while he plays. The otherwise robotic 2-way forward has shown great consistency with his play over the years so it's nothing to worry about for Blackhawks fans. Just remember, he is Marian Hossa and you are not.

SLGT: Is this the year Patrick Kane finally wears enough Axe Body Spray to make opponents not want to get close enough to defend him, allowing him to challenge for the Hart Trophy?

JK: After Patrick Kane's recent lengthy and robust contract extension, I highly doubt he uses Axe Body Spray. I wouldn't be surprised if he bathed in Chanel with as much money as that man is making. But to answer the question... Unless Crosby has another season ending concussion, Stamkos breaks his other leg and Giroux is suspended for man-handling a cop all in the same season, Patrick Kane will never win the Hart Trophy. Let's face it, Kane is an extremely talented player with insane skill. But as long as Coach Q is behind the bench, Kane won't ever see consistent playing time with a line-mate to rack up the points he would need to win that type of hardware. However, I believe all Blackhawks fans are more than happy seeing him win a few more Conn Smythe's to add to his trophy case.

SLGT: And finally, what's your prediction for tonight? Will Brent Seabrook finally get drawn into a forced fight after the Wakey-Wakey Affair of 2014 that distracts from the actual game? Will the Hawks destroy the Blues' flu-ridden asses, or will the Blues recover to only lose a close, "moral victory" game?

JK: I'm not sure how half your team developed flu like symptoms; Hitchcock with a bad batch of horse meat from Arby's? Reaves and Ott brought something "special" to the locker room from their dumpster homes? Too much time spent in prison by Backes and Jackman? Who knows? Regardless, the Blues and Blackhawks always seem to get the best of each other. Especially over the last few years 'NHL mandated rivalry' years. No matter who comes out on top I bet it will be a rough, emotionally exhausting game for fans of both ends. I would like to believe that the Hawks should skate passed the sluggish starting Blues. But with Raanta in net it would be hard to think that confidence is through the roof in the Chicago locker room. I wish upon you a moral victory, though, but unfortunately the NHL doesn't give 2 points for those.


There you have it! Send your hate mail to @JimKressJr. Be sure to check out the other half of the conversation at City on the Take.

And buy your rucking St. Louis Game Time papers tonight, people!