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February 24, 2:00 PM ET
Chat with Jesse Rogers

Jesse Rogers
  (2:02 PM)

Hi all. Welcome to our weekly chat. Getting ready to hunker in for a huge day of hockey. Single elimination...hey, and the U.S. is on NBC! Great episode of Days of Our Lives getting me ready. :)Hawks start practice again tomorrow...fire away with questions

Tom (Chicago, IL)

With all the trade rumors swirling about like the winds during a tornado in Kansas, the Hawks are staying put, right?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:04 PM)

I wouldnt say that. I think they could still make a minor move for another D-man and of course there is the goalie situation...They have some interest in Vokoun...they may make a play for him..not sure about any other goalie

Saiyid (Damen )

What's the latest on the Hawks goalie-trade rumors?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:07 PM)

Ok, looks like a lot of thses are coming in so heres the deal as far as I know...there is no deal in place for vokoun as we speak. for someone else? I cant tell you. for the life of me I dont know why they would want anyone else except MAYBE, MAYBE turco or roloson...but i wouldnt take either one over what the hawks have. vokoun would be the one. i dont believe florida wants huet back so the deal has to be real sweet for that to happen or it will happem without him involved or it wont happen...i love roenick. but halak? why? isnt niemi the same thing? young and pretty much inexperienced..plus, niemi is here and playing without a ton of pressure...whoever comes here is going to be up to his neck in pressure..its why vokoun makes the only sense

Dan (Elk Grove Village)

Jesse:What's your guess for the Hawks record in these final 21 games of the regular season and how confident are you that they can overtake the Sharks for top seed in the west?Thanks!

Jesse Rogers
  (2:09 PM)

I'll say no on catching the sharks...just a gut feel. i say a few games above .500 for the final 21...maybe 12-9 or 13-8....and some of those losses could be OT so points are had...something like that..of course,who knows..just a guess

Brad (Toronto )

Whats the earliest a trade can be made after the freeze??

Jesse Rogers
  (2:10 PM)

As far as I know midnight this sunday...more likely to be announced monday morning im sure...

Michael (Chicago)

What kind of ice team should we expect for Keith/Seabrook post olympics and pre playoffs?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:11 PM)

I think Keith for sure will be reduced by a couple minutes per game...doesnt sound like much but it adds up. Johnsson will see big minutes

Michael (Chicago)

Jonathan Toews is really standing out among a team of Canadian superstars? Grade his performance and what will it translate into once he returns to the Blackhawks?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:12 PM)

He's been one of thier better players, for sure. So strong on the puck..he's just solid in all phases. doesnt mater the situation..not sure it has much affect on the stretch run...unless he needed the confidence of playing with the world's greats

Steve G (Northbrook)

Jesse..before the Olympics started I was worried about any of the Hawks getting hurt, but I must say I'm more worried about how these Olympics are going to effect Brent Seabrook mentally. I know he hasn't had much playing time, but the issue that is more concerning to me is how Seabrook is playing when he's on the ice. He looks like a guy that has lost his confidence even more now then before the Olympic break. Do you think he will be able to bounce back from the poor showing he's had in the Olympics?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:14 PM)

Its a good question. We've seen both Seabrook and Keith make a few more mistakes than anyone is used to. My only answer is they could probably use a couple days off to get away from hockey...its probably why we should root for russia tonight...if Canada loses, we wont see keith, seabrook, or toews at practice until sunday, I predict...the answer is yes, he can bounce back, but i think they need to re-start their engines here at some point...if they keep winning not sure they can

Mike (Rochester NY)

Canada or Russia? Why?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:16 PM)

Russia. I just think the pressure is still all over canada. They havent had a signature win yet..this would be it but Ovechkin plays with such passion; i think that trickles down. if ever a russian team has little pressure and can play loose, its this one....Something about Canada just doesnt feel right....still.

Aaron (Aurora)

Jesse-Aside from Toews, the Hawks' Olympians have generally struggled to this point. Any chance their struggles have an impact on their confidence skating into the home stretch of the NHL season?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:19 PM)

Kane, no. Nothing bothers him. And he hasnt played poorly. I dont know about the others...you can look at it a ton of different ways.might motivate keith and seabrook...might be good for them this is behind them..or maybe they know the weight of the hawks is kind of on thier shoulders too..i think the only way it affects them is if one of them was the obvious "goat" of the games. ya know if one of them gives away a puck tonight to eliminate his team and the whole country is all over him...thats a scenario that carrys over

Hack (the Loop)

Jesse,I've heard (maybe from you or somewhere else) that Q will give the olympic participants tuesday's (3/2) game off if they want it. Is this going to happen, and do you think the 6 players will take him up on it?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:21 PM)

I mentioned in a blog that it could happen. Babcock did it with his swedish players in '06. If any of them play sunday.. i would almost gurantee that they wont play in NY, unless they insisted i suppose. if eliminated tonight, they play....eliminated saturday...50/50..all my guess..but makes sense...i'll ask Q tomorrow at practice

George (Chicago)

What's your take on how Babcock has used the Hawks players for Team Canada?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:23 PM)

Might be biased but seems like he could use Toews even more...wouldnt mind him with crosby some more..the seabrook "benching" has been interesting. i wrote the other day if 20 year old doughty is getting more minutes than 6 other D-men, something is wrong. he may deserve it, im not saying he doesnt but something is wrong with this defense if thats the case...im sure seabrook is surprised he and keith have basically been split up and it happened quick...i guess i question how hes working the defense..there is little chemistry back there

Hack (the Loop)

Obviously Q was not happy with Versteeg's play before the break. If Versteeg isn't dealt, where do you think Q puts him? Could he see some fourth line time?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:25 PM)

Q seems like most coaches...doesnt hold a grudge, at least not for too long. all starts anew..especially after a 2 week break..but, there is a numebrs game going on so yes i could see him getting 4th line minutes or to make further point i could see a "regular" getting a game off when all are healthy

Michael (Chicago)

I'm going to the Kings/Hawks game March 10th!!!!!!!!!! Will I see you there?!

Jesse Rogers
  (2:25 PM)

Not if I see u first. :)kidding

Michael (Chicago)

What have you noticed about Hossa's game during the olympics? You've said the olympics might help him get stronger and more into mid-season form, would you say Hossa's ready to come back playing at his full potential?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:27 PM)

Have to be honest. I've seen the least of Slovakia. Past my bedtime but I do think he's right there. He was playing well when they left. I do expect a great finish by him. Hopefully they lose tonight...who cares about slovakia..lets get him back here and ready to go. lol.

Michael (Chicago)

Any updates/predicitons on when we will see Madden and Burrish playing again?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:29 PM)

Find out about madden tomorrow. make sure you check my blog out cause im sure there will be plenty of news coming out of the break...burish, im going with the first or second game back. maybe he doesnt want to start with a back to back so why not play him in the second one at home. he'll run thru the boards when he hears the home crowd.

Brad (Toronto )

I watched the Slovakia game last night. Seems like all of Halak goals against were high glove, sound familiar? Don't see it being an upgrade from Huet.

Jesse Rogers
  (2:30 PM)

Or niemi. Vokoun is the ONLY guy i would trade for of the supposed available tenders. take that to the bank. hes the only one..and maybe ill be shocked but I will be if they get anyone else.

Dane (Vancouver (by way of chicago))

looking forward to burish's return...from never playing hockey i feel like i dont understand the kind of player he is...ie what his strengths are, can you elaborate?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:32 PM)

With these types of players you never look at points. he deosnt have that kind of skill. but he will skate hard, hit hard, and stir things up...its all baout energy...he ises his for that. kane uses his for scoring. burish can energize a team..cause when skilled guys see that a guy making the minimum type money is paying that hard it rubs off...

Jesse Rogers
  (2:32 PM)

should read "playing that hard"...sorry about spelling in that last graph and anywhere else!

BJ (Chicago)

As much as the Hawks would like to dump Huets contract do you honestly think there is any possible way to move him? No GM is blind to the fact that it's a bad contract. They don't want it any more than the Hawks do.

Jesse Rogers
  (2:34 PM)

For the most part I agree with you. I've talked to some people in hockey about that contract..its one level too high they say. he should be a 4 mil goaltender...but he isnt horrendous. not even close, so there is always a chance. a team might say we'll take him but throw in sharp or player X...so there is a chance but in my mind, not a great one...if he had one mroe year left, much easier

Jesse Rogers
  (2:37 PM)

BY the way. Ive talked to vokoun's agent a couple times. as of yesterday he has not been asked to waive his no-trade clause but maybe anyone interested is waiting for him to finish olympics before approaching florida...or maybe florida said wait until its over...also talked with huet's agent and all he said was he and huet are confident he'll have a strong finish. hasnt heard boo about a trade..take all that for what its worth.

Dane (Vancouver (by way of chicago))

also im working in the production truck, for RDS doing all the hockey games...anything you want me to ask roenick?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:38 PM)

If you're serious, tell him he owes me 20 bucks. and then ask him how Halak is any better than Niemi...knowing that Niemi is alread here and used to the system, etc. Im not saying Halak isnt a better long term guy, i dont know..but for this run, i wouldnt want him

Michael (Chicago)

On a scale of 0?00% what are the chances the Blackhawks land Vokoun? And what would the Hawks have to give up?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:40 PM)

50% and thats not a cop out. its my true opinion. cant tell you exactly what it will take but florida is blowing up their team so may not be as much off the big club as you might think. steeg, prospects, draft picks, maybe niemi or MAYBE huet (but i doubt it!)..if u get a chance read the letter from the panthers owners on florida's website..harsh stuff!!

Michael (Chicago)

Have you heard anything from the Ducks about Niedermayer being available?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:42 PM)

No, nothign new. Last I hear, he was not. but again, no one wants to mess with anyone in the olympics so that could be why nothing new OR hes just not available.

Dane (Vancouver (by way of chicago))

oh im serious, an engineer whose normal gig is blackhawk hockey at the uc...ill relay the message

Jesse Rogers
  (2:42 PM)

Throw him in on this chat. Oh, he has to work in 15 minutes!

BJ (Chicago)

Jesse, in one word can you describe NBC's coverage of the olympic hockey?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:44 PM)

Not a fan of any hockey coverage. on versus or olympics or nbc or whatever. now, emrick and eddie are great but that debacel on sunday was a joke. MSNBC. no HD in my house. could barely find the reg channel. but the game broadcasts are fine

Hack (the Loop)

Jesse, who are your picks for today's four games? You going chalk all the way?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:48 PM)

i like russia for sure, i think CZECH loses, i think sweden/slovakia will be closer than most might think but ill go with sweden...i give the swiss a chance...a slight one. they've played well. close to the vest. if they get a break and a lead and hiller stands on his head..it wouldnt shock me..

BJ (Chicago)

Can Dane ask JR what he wanted to do to Pierre McGuire after the hotel trashing comments he threw in his face on live TV. Roenick looked like he wanted to pummell him.

Jesse Rogers
  (2:49 PM)

He wouldnt be the only one that wants to take a shot at pierre and ill leave it at that!

Steve G (Northbrook)

Jesse..what do you think of Roenick being an analyst on NBC? I think he could be America's Don Cherry. At least Roenick can admit when he's wrong about someone (ex Chris Drury comments).

Jesse Rogers
  (2:50 PM)

Im with you. I wrote a blog recently saying the NHL needs a Charles Barkley or Don Cherry. He's the best shot we have

Michael (Chicago)

Does the play of youngsters Bickel and Dowell combined with Beach's play in the minors leave you confident that they can trade current NHL players now and still be pretty good in the future?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:52 PM)

Yeah I think so. Im doing an interview with Director of Player Development Norm MacIver on friday so Ill get the scoop on prospects then...look for a blog about it soon but my basic answer for filling out the bottom 6 forwards is yes i think they have it. not so much on D, in my opinion

Michael (Chicago)

How big of a hit will Burish's first of the season be?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:52 PM)

Tsunami like

Hack (the Loop)

It seems like (from quotes and observation) that the numerous trade rumors may be affecting Versteeg's play. From what you know of Huet's personality, do you think all of the trade rumors will help or hurt his game?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:54 PM)

No one (not even the player sometimes) knows what is affecting them mentally. From what I know of HUet, hes one of those guys that is the same with or without rumours. i could be wrong but i think he's just worried about stopping the puck and not much else at this point

Jeremy (Lombard)

With all these rumors swirling around about the trades its apparent we need to make a move. My question is how much money do we actually need to shed to begin next year to be under the cap? we got rid of barker so that's 3.08 million. Everyone says between 10-12 million but is that including the following year for sharp, seabrook etc to stay as well or is it just to be under the cap this summer leading to next season? If its next season then all you have to really do is move versteeg out by the start of camp next year and worry about huet or campbell maybe the following.

Jesse Rogers
  (2:55 PM)

NOt sure what you're asking...for next season that numebr is correct. like 12 million

Joe (@ work)

This morning on the NBC news ticker at the bottom of the screen it says that Wirtz has officially asked to host the NHL All-Star Game. Is this true and if so when is the earliest we can host it?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:56 PM)

I know John M has been asking for a while. didnt know they had to make it official. anyway...i think 2012 or 2013 is the earliest off the top of my head

Joe (Chicago)

Lay off Versteeg! How come no one is talking about Buff underperforming? Or Bolland (I know, I know, he just came back from injury). Steeger has offensive skills that you just cannot teach. The Hawks would be silly to get rid of him at this stage in his career. And his contract isn't overwhelming either. So when you see Versteeg next, tell him I'm still behind him, and to keep his hands and his feet moving, and that puck will go in the net sooner rather than later!

Jesse Rogers
  (2:59 PM)

Its not that anyone is all over him but they have to move salary and he's eligible. his mistakes are more glaring than say Buffs. Buff is more about playing a certain way than making pure mistakes...i like versteeg...thats not the issue. he does have skill and on many teams hes an easy top 6 for a long time. on this one, hard to crack

Michael (Chicago)

Do you think Coach Q has his mind already made up about who will start in goal against the Islanders or is he gonna wait til after practice resumes to make a decision?

Jesse Rogers
  (3:00 PM)

My guess is he has an idea BUT most coaches, and I dont see Q being any different, will let a situation like this (5 practice days) have an affect. I mean if one comes back looking rusty...but they have back to backs so u would think they would split..but i thought that a couple weekends ago...

Roman (Chicago)

After Olympics ,relationship will stay same with Patrick and Towes USA - CANDA ? or better ...

Jesse Rogers
  (3:01 PM)

They will be the same. No issues

Hack (The Loop)

Quickly, who is your "pick to click" for the US in today's game? Does Stastny finally get on the board? Kaner for a couple points? Rafalski staying hot?

Jesse Rogers
  (3:01 PM)

88

Tim (Chicago)

Is Kane's exposure starting to rise with his play so far in USA Hockey outside of Chicago? Do you think he becomes one of the better know names in USA Hockey?

Jesse Rogers
  (3:02 PM)

He's already there...he might play in 4 or 5 olympics if they let the pros play

Jesse Rogers
  (3:02 PM)

Couple more than game time!!

Brad (Toronto )

So i noticed on the website that the Redwings game is at 1130 CT (3/7/10) at the UC, is this 100% confirmed?

Jesse Rogers
  (3:03 PM)

Yes. NBC game at 11:30...think they needed permission from players association. pretty sure game cant start before noon local time. brian burke wouldnt be happy!

Jay (Chicago)

With all the salary cap issues and worries about next year, could the Hawks be even better next season? The core will be there but we replace Versteeg, Byfuglien and Johnsson with Beach, Bickell and Hendry. I like our team now but Versteeg and Byfuglien seem to disappear for weeks at a time. We have hit pretty good on rookies recently.

Jesse Rogers
  (3:04 PM)

In theory, sure you could make a case, but what happens when there are injuries. the beauty of this team is the depth. I'll still take steeg and buff over some of those guys over the long haul

ben (chicago)

Read that Shaun White asked to hang out with Kaner. Do you know if they got together? I see a next generation of the Athletic White Kids Who Have Been On the Cover Of A Video Game Rat Pack forming. It's cool that Kane got in on the ground floor.

Jesse Rogers
  (3:05 PM)

I dont know but Lindey Vonn....maybe. :)

Jesse Rogers
  (3:05 PM)

Lindsey

Michael (Chicago)

I think the Sunday game against the Capitals game will be key. It should give the Hawks a boost for the final leg of the season. Agree?

Jesse Rogers
  (3:05 PM)

No, it'll be great but not a key unless there is a blowout i suppose

Jesse Rogers
  (3:07 PM)

Game on. Thanks all. Follow me on twitter @espnchihawks especially with trade deadline coming up. sign up now. u can email me at jrogers@espnchicago.com and check out my blog..hawks start practice thursday so plenty to write about it! Thanks again and enjoy the games today