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Hawks' power-play struggles continue

1/3/2012

CHICAGO -- It's a theme the Blackhawks are all too familiar with.

The team's power-play unit came up short, going 0 for 5, in a 4-3 loss to the Edmonton Oilers Monday night. It was the difference in the game, especially considering the Oilers scored twice with the man-advantage after Dan Carcillo was called for a five-minute boarding infraction.

“Our power play didn’t do much tonight to get ourselves what we needed,” coach Joel Quenneville simply stated afterwards.

Now one for its last 22 it’s starting to cost the Hawks. Quenneville was asked why it’s struggling.

“I’m not sure,” he said. “Tough stretch. We’ll tweak it. We’ll look for different things.”

That means expect personnel changes as the Hawks head back to practice Tuesday and Wednesday. Both units need a mini-overhaul. The Hawks started the season struggling with the man advantage before making changes and the results were positive. Expect similar to happen again.

Slappers

• Quenneville didn’t say for sure if there should have been a high- sticking infraction on the sequence that led to the Oilers second power play goal. Niklas Hjalmarsson was hit high and then dropped his stick allowing the Oilers to score.

“I don’t know if that was a penalty or not, if it’s an extension of the release,” he said. “But it wasn’t really a shot. I’m not going to argue the call.”

• Rookie Jimmy Hayes scored his first NHL goal in the third period to cut the Oilers lead to 4-3. He took 11 shifts playing 7:40 in his second career game. He registered just the one shot that went in.

• The Hawks are now 14-1-1 when scoring the first goal of the game as they did on Monday.