Let it all out, Hoss ( Bruce Bennett, Getty Images)

Maybe Alicia Keys (note: I do not listen to Alicia Keys ) knew what she was talking about in that one Jay Z song?

The Blackhawks rolled into New York and played absolutely inspired hockey all night long. The Hawks threw 4 first period goals past a stunned Martin Biron and that’s all they would need to beat the best team in the Eastern Conference. While things got a little bumpy at the end of the 2nd period, the outcome was never really in doubt after the forth Blackhawk goal – which came just under 10 minutes into the contest.

The game started with a Jonathan Toews penalty shot goal after Dan Girardi covered the puck in the Rangers crease (ILLEGAL) after a wonderful shift by Toews, Patrick Kane (TRADE HIM!) and Patrick Sharp. I can’t be the only one who felt good about where this one was heading after that, right?

Turns out I was correct. Just a minute later, Nick Leddy put a slap shot from the blue line past Biron off a beautiful pass from Marian Hossa.  The Handsome Man would add the Hawks 3rd goal in the first 4 minutes of the game with a helper from Toews. The Hawks finished off their scoring halfway through the period when Kane hit a streaking Hossa who found the same five hole Towes did 8 minutes earlier.

Things were realitivly tight in the second after Mark Staal dented the twine for the Rangers. Corey Crawford was screened on the long shot and it wasn’t a horrible goal to give up by any means. In fact, Crow kept this game out of reach late in the 2nd period when the Rangers appeared to be getting serious for a hot minute. The Hawks escaped the late barrage and headed into the final period with a 4-1 lead.

The 3rd period saw the Hawks playing a little tenativly, but what do you expect from a team with a three goal lead that hasn’t won a game in almost a month? Carl Hagelin would score for the Rangers with 5 minutes left in the period to make the last few minutes semi-interesting – but there would be no comeback this evening. The Rangers pulled Biron fairly early but never really got any pressure with the extra man.  Crawford made the saves he needed to and that was it……HAWKS WIN!

Some quick news before we get to the diamonds: Dallas sent veteran defenseman Nicklas Grossman to the Flyers in exchange for a couple of draft picks. Jesse Rogers had Stan Bowman in on Grossman – but the Stars were apparently asking for Brandon Saad in return. Bowman is not an idiot, so he obviously refused to make the deal. That wasn’t the only movement of the evening as Steve Yzerman looks to have started selling in Tampa Bay, sending center Dominic Moore to San Jose for a 2nd round pick. Tampa also sat Pavel Kubina tonight in anticipation of dealing him.


♦ It is stunning to me that goaltenders STILL do not know that Johnny Toews is going five hole for shoot-outs and penalty shots.

♦ Marian Hossa was a damn monster all night long. Hoss has been visibly frustraed the past few games. I can’t imagine anyone other than Q and Crawford feeling better than Hoss on the flight home. Well, maybe Tazer.

Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook were in rare form tonight. Well done, boys.  Well done.

John Scott nearly blew the whole goddamn thing when he  unacceptably threw a late hit on a puckless John Mitchell a little over a minute after the 3rd Hawks goal.  The senseless penalty put the Hawks on a 4 minute penalty kill which they were fortunate enough to survive. Scott played all of 2: 19 tonight. The question of why is going to drive me to an early grave. Whenever I want to yell at someone for suggesting that the Blackhawks fire Joel Quenneville, I think of this and restrain myself.

♦ It looked like Mike Haviland was running the PK tonight. Read into that what you will.

♦ Our PP was really the only disappointing part of the evening . 0 for 3 tonight.

♦ Can’t help but feel a bit bad for Kane. It seemed like every Hawks star was going to get a break tonight. While he had a nice assist – he never really got any good looks at Biron for himself tonight. Keep fighting Kaner – there is a light at the end of this tunnel.