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|Marty Turco's puck handline produced positives and negatives in the preseason.|
He could be a salary cap casualty as both Leddy and Morin have $1 million -- or over -- cap hits with their bonuses, plus the Hawks are stacked at right wing. Morin didn't look as comfortable playing on the left side.
Talking with their new teammates, there is a poise to their game that every player, at any age, is looking for. Yes, there will be some rookie moments, but that poise will come in handy in crunch time. Especially for a defenseman like Leddy, who might get caught on an island every so often. Camp proved Stan Bowman right: the cupboard is filling back up. Igor Makarov is a winger with plenty of potential, and while Kyle Beach didn't make the team, he's trending in the right direction. Having said that, the rest of the defensive prospects were underwhelming as were the goalies. Its two areas of concern in terms of depth.
Joel Quenneville waited until the final two preseason games to give us a glimpse of how he will start the season. If you're wondering who plays the other wing with Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane, keep wondering. Unless Quenneville changes his mind between now and Thursday, they aren't playing together.
Here's how the lines could shape up, now that Morin was sent down.
Tomas Kopecky/Jonathan Toews/Marian Hossa
Troy Brouwer/Patrick Sharp/Patrick Kane
Bryan Bickell/Dave Bolland/Fernando Pisani
Viktor Stalberg/Jake Dowell/Jack Skille
It's hard to know who is on the first and second line, or on the hird and fourth. That's probably how Quenneville likes it. Interchangeable.
Goalie Turnover: The Hawks' new goaltending tandem was adequate in the preseason. It's hard to judge a veteran like Marty Turco. He had some decent moments but he admittedly isn't quite there yet. He claims he will be by Thursday. The good and the bad of a puck handling goalie were on display in the preseason. His home run passes set up some scoring opportunities and led to a goal or two, but several turnovers turned his prowess against him, most notably Sunday night against the Blues. Corey Crawford did nothing to make you think he can't handle the back-up role. Expect a 55/25 or 60/20 split if all goes according to plan.
Hunger: It's only a few weeks but no one on this team seems satisfied with the accomplishments of last year. The new guys want a chance at feeling it for themselves -- they've seen the rock-star attention the returnees are getting -- and the veterans are all so young, hungry and professional, it just doesn't seem like an issue. Many worried about Patrick Kane and his success hangover, but all he has done in camp is talk about “doing it all again.” The key players to push the rest, though, are Toews and Duncan Keith. They only know one way: hard work and winning. Satisfaction won't be an issue.