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March 30, 1:00 PM ET
Chat with Jesse Rogers

Jesse Rogers
  (1:02 PM)

Hi all, welcome to our weekly Blackhawks chat! Hawks are off today after that waste of a game last night...back to practice tomorrow then off to Columbus for one last game against the Jackets...We're almost to the end...I think they are going to make the away with questions!

Rick (Loop)

Who are the trash talkers on the Hawks bench that set Thornton off? Is this an issue Q is concerned about?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:04 PM)

I do not know. Wasnt there last night but it doesnt sound they expanded much on it during postgame...will ask tomorrow..thats a perfect day or two after follow up...remember, thornton almost went knee to knee on Hjalmarsson a few nminutes earlier so I would bet the chirping came from that incident.."you got what you deserved typoe of thing.."

Paul (Chicago)

Any chance Sharp gets back for the last week of the season? We desperately need him back.

Jesse Rogers
  (1:05 PM)

Sounds like he could be back at least for the latter part of the week..maybe st. louis and 2 det games...

Jen (Naperville)

With all the hand-wringing going on over the recent stimbles the Blackhawks have had and fussing over points left on the table, at the end of the day, do you honestly think Dallas or Calgary will be able to overtake us in the standngs?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:07 PM)

No, I think the Hawks will play the way they have to if their backs are against the wall which I suppose they are but compared to dallas they have a tiny breathing room...they'll be ok...Might not be pretty but they will get in..would feel diff if THEY were the team trailing by 3 points etc.

James (Chicago)

Who decides which players are made available to the media after games and practices? Like, when Toews doesn't come out to talk, is that all at his own discretion or do the Hawks media relations guys factor into that at all?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:09 PM)

Considering my job, thats a good question...Def up to the player first and foremost..a PR guy can ask him and maybe suggest he come out if a ton of people want him but its up to the, once in a while there is almost no one in the room after a game and the PR guy has to go find players so the media has SOMEONE to interview...road games are easier, less places for players to hide than home games!

Lawrence (Toronto)

Who do the Hawks match up better in the first round?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:12 PM)

I think prob det. the season series has shown that and the fact that both teams play a similiar style benefits the hawks. I dont mind Vancouver matchup but with bolland it becomes very difficult. Still think they would be Nash but they always put a scare...anaheim and calgary arent great matchups...anyone that has a big forecheck on Hawks D is problematic

Jesse Rogers
  (1:12 PM)

without bolland I meant of course

Adam (San Diego)

Is it safe to say the Hawks were completely exhausted after playing back to back games on the road? They looked like they had no energy last night...

Jesse Rogers
  (1:13 PM)

That's kind of how I saw it...emotionally, its prob not a great matchup for them so add that all up and you get a loss...and I know it sounds crazy but they could "afford" one and right now they are just in survival mode so I see them winning the games they HAVE to win...if that makes sense...

Steve (St. Louis)

If the hockey gods said you could only have Sharp or Bolland for the playoffs but not both, who would you pick?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:15 PM)

For all 4 rounds? Prob Bolland because he's a true center and the hawks are thin there...the trickle down is bigger...frees toews up, etc. bascially cause its a center over a wing let alone hes their best shutdown guy

Chris (Chicago)

Crow put the contract talks off until the season is done. If the Hawks don't get into the playoffs, how would that affect his price tag? You've said before you see 2.5 mil for him, but if we don't get in, does that drop to 2.3 or 2.2?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:16 PM)

I say either way he's in the 1.85-2.5 range barring something crazy..I mean at this point if they dont get in , its not on him unless there is a real meltdown in final 6 games...they will make him a priority and he wants to stay, will happen.

Wayne (Kansas City)

I saw some folks were giving you grief for your last write up about last night's loss in Bean town. You "chalked" it up as a loss due to the schedule. It was comforting to read this morning but i couldn't help but feel the burn of reality that our hawks might not be able to pull it all together when it really counts. Last night was playoff game. Am I over reacting?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:19 PM)

Yes. Listen, I call it like I see it. That was the Hawks with jump and emotion in their can criticze them for that if you want but I just think they are playing to the emotion of the moment...they opened up 4 points on dallas, got the big win the night felt like a loss was coming 5 min be honest i know all points are huge, blah, blah, blah...but last night was NOT a playoff game. I hope people understand what IM saying...

Jesse Rogers
  (1:20 PM)

They can still turn it on when they need/want..less margin for error many games have they won this year that they didnt deserve to...not need A game and that wont happen every night even in strecth run but when its absolutely NEEDED they will bring it and get in...then it could go either way...first round knockout or all the way...would not be SHCOKED by either..truly

Steve (St. Louis)

With the exception of the final minute of the Detroit game, Kane has looked like a spectator in the last two games. He doesn't seem to be engaged and has made numerous lazy plays. Is he playing too much or is something else the cause?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:22 PM)

Most in hockey would cant take that last min away by the way..nor the assist in overtime...nor the assist in regulation...when you play alot and you are an offensive player you have to conserve and sometimes it looks like he's lazy in that regard..I think he's been fine which doesnt mean he cant do more in own end ,etc. but still he's doing his job for the most part in my opinion

Jesse Rogers
  (1:22 PM)

Most in hockey would cant take that last min away by the way..nor the assist in overtime...nor the assist in regulation...when you play alot and you are an offensive player you have to conserve and sometimes it looks like he's lazy in that regard..I think he's been fine which doesnt mean he cant do more in own end ,etc. but still he's doing his job for the most part in my opinion

Chris (Chicago)

I read this thought on the ESPN NHL blog...what do you think of a shorter season? Maybe end it by March 31 and playoffs done by May 31. Cut some preseason out and such. I think it would be great for the game of hockey since it will rule next winter when the NBA is locked out.

Jesse Rogers
  (1:23 PM)

I actually didnt see that blog but I love it. All sports leagues go to far and yes hockey should end before summer. I think we can all agree on that

Mike (Mt. Pleasant, WI)

Crawford looked like a rookie against the Briuns. Is there a chance the Hawks make a change for the playoffs (if they make it)and rely on Turco's experience?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:23 PM)


Roy (Loop)

What's going on with our bench making comments at injured players? I believe last night wasn't the first time its happened this season.

Jesse Rogers
  (1:24 PM)

Again, I think it stemmed from Thornton going knee to knee on hammer plus he's a shirper too..mabe not best timing when bleeding from head but I bet no one says anything without hammer hit

Joe Matarrese (Oak Forest,Il)

Why have the hawks not called up Garnett Exelby I don't think Nick Leddy belongs in the nhl

Jesse Rogers
  (1:25 PM)

I havent seen Exelby play much but trust me if they thought he was a better option he would be here..Leddy has had a dip but still ok as a 6

Dr Heart Surgeon (Chi-city)

Should I expect to see an influx of patients if the Hawks and Wings play each other in the playoffs? Who wins that series (assuming Hawks even make it in)?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:26 PM)

It would be tight. I dont see how it doesnt go at least 6 and maybe 7

Bobby B (Newport Beach, CA)

Hoss is on a tear and Kruger looks like the real deal so barring any set back w injuries these are the lines id like to see for the playoffs...Jesse, how would you have them?Kopecky-Toews-HossaSharp-Kruger-KaneBickell-Bolland-FrolikStallberg-Johnson-Brouwer

Jesse Rogers
  (1:27 PM)

I dont mind it but you cant count on Bolland...and if Bolland is in there then i wouldnt put toews with hossa..WITHOUT bolland I do like Toews w/ Hossa cause they can be a defensive and offensive I kind of like it...kruger getting better. slowly..couple nice feeds last night

kc (chicago)

Do we blame Q or the players? When Hawks play aggressive attacking style of hockey(see Det game) they are an elite team but majority of the time they sit back and let the game come to them. Not aggressive and without heart (see Boston game)

Jesse Rogers
  (1:28 PM)

The opponent has somehting to do with it..Van and det allow the hawks to play to their strenght..Boston did not though some of that is on fatigue..not about of play

Brian (Algonquin)

In a potential first round matchup with either Vancouver,Detroit or San Jose,who do the hawks matchup the best with?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:29 PM)

Prob det, than SJ, then VAN, this is without bolland...with him..maybe SJ first

Peter M (Quincy)

It almost seems like Hawks need to make it tough on themselves!! they need the challenge of must-win games...a win against Anaheim or Boston would have made things so much easier!! Do you ever get the feeling they will do just enough to get in? Expect it to happen last weekend as Dallas and other challengers (Calgary?) are fading fast, alsoPS They should have played Turco a few games instead of burying him. Obvious they have no confidence in him now

Jesse Rogers
  (1:31 PM)

yeah, thats my basic feeling...once they kind of realized they weent going to follow up the stanley cup year with some incredible 110 point season i think its just been about getting in...not a conscious thing just sub-conscious..

Tim (Carol Stream)

Does last night's game concern you considering that it could've been considered a "playoff-type" game. Hawks were out muscled, Toews was consistenly hit and nobody responded. Brouwer has been hitting people in the second half but was MIA yesterday. Bickell never hits, responds, or initiates contact, he thinks he's a skill player. Can the Hawks survive a playoff run without the threat of playing physical?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:32 PM)

Some of what you say makes sense...bickell/brouwer..but I just think you throw out last night...however the hope is these guys play with some passion again, when they REALLY have to...I know it sound sgoofy cause you would thnk they HAD to last night but lets face it with a 3 point lead there will be bigger games in the next week

adam (Schaumburg)

Jesse do you think the Hawks having won 8 in a row at one point kind of drained this team because of how hard they had to fight just to get back into playoff race? if so then how is that going to affect them down the road when they need energy because lately they just look flat.

Jesse Rogers
  (1:33 PM)

NO, I said during and just after that strecth they were going to have a little lull. Not drained..just doing enough to get in as I've been indicating..again, ANYTHING can happen come playoffs. not cliche. truth

Jamie (Chicago)

Could the Hawks beat the Canucks if they meet in the first round?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:34 PM)

I think so...not one of those yrs where 8 seed has no chance...not saying its going to happen but would be better with bolland thats for sure

Steve (Aurora)

What spot will the Hawks have in the playoffs? 6th, 7th, 8th????

Jesse Rogers
  (1:34 PM)

Im going to say 6th

mike G (Chicago)

you mentioned Bolland.. Any timetable on him?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:35 PM)

Nope. Nothing new. Slow progress but no one knows when he'll be cleared in teh way Crosby just was

Rick (Loop)

I like the concept of Toews with Hossa, but it seems like Kane's game always dips when he's not paired w/ Toews. This late in the season, do you still think he'll be able to develop some sort of chemistry w/ a new line?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:37 PM)

Great question...its kind of why Kane has been with Toews most of the way here after Hossa had that great start with him...Prob pie in the sky thinking but maybe kruge rcan handle..kind of nifty passer and smart player..might click...just need Toews for defense and Hossa can help..and then they create offense off of it..not perfect..maybe sharp centers kane or something if they went that route..I know its not what anyone wants but geztlaf and comapny schooled them when they got the chance...sedins would do the same Im guessing

Matt (Chicago)

With the season coming to an end and our schedule not allowing for more than one day off between game, are the Hawks focusing on healing more than practice?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:39 PM)

Q is really generous with days off..coming off short summer anbd tight race i think he's giving them more than usual..practice isnt going to do much for you will do many passing drills can you do? morning skates are important..get the blood some fundamentals, etc. in between not that big

Rick (Loop)

Do you see Q making Pisani (or somebody else) a healthy scratch and dressing John Scott for any more games this season? It seems like teams are getting more and more physical against the hawks.

Jesse Rogers
  (1:41 PM)

Good question. I would do it. I know Pisani is "reliable" that the word hockey people use...but I ask reliable for what? So yes, i would play Scott. I like him. Not sure why but since beginning of season when he fell down he's been fine for what they ask

Ross (West Loop)

Considering the success the Blackhawks have had the last 2 seasons in the playoffs against Vancouver, how confident in the Hawks are you this year if we end up facing the Canucks in the first round?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:43 PM)

More so if Bolland was playing but I give them a chance..both teams have injuries..i think it will be the track meet its been in the past HOWEVER, the canucks wont give away games via penalties like they did so the hawks will have to outwork me they just had better leadership and played smarter..that gap has been closed...

Stacy (Chicago)

Hi Jesse,What is going on with Bickell & Brouwer? Brouwer at least shows some effort but Bickell is such a big body and played that way last year, this year he's trying to be a finesse player. Hawks need the big body back!

Jesse Rogers
  (1:44 PM)

Not sure. ive talked to both in the last few days and theyve been told by Q to pick it up...maybe out of their comfort zone moving around lines..not sure..they both know it but arent completly doing it..wish I had an do the coaches

CL (Lake Bluff)

Would last night have been a good start for Turco...given they could "afford" the loss?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:45 PM)

Not a bad thought..with 2 days here in between might have been ok to start craw but of course he could have had 3 days between games...huge. anyway, they prob would have lost anyway but no way Q can know that until its too late...I can see a case either way

Maximo (Chicago)

Who would you say we miss most from last season, if you had to pick one guy?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:47 PM)

Its so hard to say but prob buff..his verstility, size, ability, etc. has a trickle down that we cant even quantify...others would say Ladd for actually similair reasons..forecheck doesnt show up in boxscore for of those 2 for sure

Jon (Genoa)

I know what Ryan Johnson and Coach Q had to say about Todd Bertuzzi's hit Monday night. In your opinion, was the five minute major/game misconduct sufficient punishment, or should he have been suspended?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:48 PM)

maybe 1 game but this didnt outrage me (or them) like Kubina's hit did.

BK__Lounge (Minneapolis)

Stalberg has played very well and with a lot of energy of late. Why is he not playing with Kane and Toews?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:49 PM)

Think they wanted a little more balance defensively..brouwer a little more responsible..remember how they got burned against getzlaf line...he might return there

Matt (Melrose Park)

During the play-offs are we able to have more guys on the bench or are they limited to 20?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:50 PM)

Just 20 on the bench but the roster of available players is expanded...the hawks will have like 5 extar guys with the team probably but only 20 dress

Scottie (Chicago)

Do you think the hawks have trouble against the opponent that stands you up at the blue ine? for example nashville traps and i thought boston stopped us at the blue line last night whereas other teams let us come to them and thats when we shine...

Jesse Rogers
  (1:51 PM)

Little bit..bigges issue is the forecheck...teams know the Hawks like to go D to D and then up and out...if they disrupt that it creates time in thier own zone and bad things happen..they can survive the nash style more than the calagary style in my opinion

David (waukegan)

do you see turco playing any of the final regular season games?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:52 PM)

I do. Maybe one..not sure which one

Charles (Libertyville)

Jess, what's your take on this yapping at Thornton as he skates off bleeding? I love the Hawks, but this isn't a proud moment. Yapping on the ice is one thing, but this seems low class. Should Toews and Q put the kibosh on this?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:53 PM)

I think already too much is being made of it..he took out a guys legs, then was bleeding and they chirped...its done. dont care either way. play them once a yr

Christobal Huet (Swiss Elite League)

McD noted a few weeks back that making the playoffs was paramount. Let's say they miss. As a life long fan, I give them a pass based on winning the cup last year and what they had to go through because of the cap. But what happens internally? You can't bring back the same team next year right? There will be similar cap contraints this summer as well. Who pays the price?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:55 PM)

Its a good question..I disagree with chalking it up but they will simply look at it and say "ok, what was the reason?" and the answer they will end up with will be 2 and 7 were fatigued...a full summer will solve that and they will be ready to go..of course you tweak.. there will be some changes etc. but thats the MAJOR conclusion they will come up with in my opinion..and they might not be wrong..(can use a real 4th line, and another center, etc. but those are secondary)

Eric (Arlington Heights)

If Bolland doesn't return, which center would be most likely to used as a checking-line type player. I could see Ryan Johnson getting beaten, but don't know who to trust in that role outside of Toews.

Jesse Rogers
  (1:56 PM)

Its Toews though Q is kind of liking Frolik but Henrik Sedin vs. Michael Frolik? uh,no.

skip (aurora)

Any chance the hawks look to move hjarlmarrson in the off-season to open up some cap space and if they tried, who might be interested

Jesse Rogers
  (1:59 PM)

I think things like that are always on the table...there are so many basically untradeable guys either by choice or by contract I think anyonw with that sort of 1-3 mil contract, etc is eligible..prob plenty of teams interested..those with cap room of course..but he's young enough you dont mind that contract, hoping he gets even better...he's like plus-23 since dec so thats good..still only has 1 more pt than cullimore had..boggles my mind

Mark (florida)

if you could create the lines with sharp healthy, what would you do?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:01 PM)

Kind of referenced this before but lets assume youre playing a team like Van, SJ, Ana...teams with real good top lines and centers...I would go82/19/81...10/16/88...22/28/29...25/17/15...with options to move stalberg up or dress scott...thats what I would try..

Jesse Rogers
  (2:01 PM)

maybe move brouwer all the way up...kopy all the way down..stal to 2nd line

taylor (chicago)

When the roster expands to 20, who do you think they will bring up?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:02 PM)

More than 20...already are expanded bt you mean for postseason..anyway, Exelby, cullimore, maybe pirri, ben least one center and 2 D..maybe Toivenen

Jesse Rogers
  (2:03 PM)

Morin if hes healthy enough...maybe a couple others to get the feel of the playoffs..beach/makarov

Nick (SF)

You think Bickell will ever grow into an enforcer that can produce, something like byfuglien is/was for us? I mean he has a good shot, but just feel like I see Bickell get knocked off his skates way too much???

Jesse Rogers
  (2:04 PM)

Hard to say...know this Q was higher on him at the beginning of the season than he seems to be on him he needs to change perception..obviously has skill/shot to score but needs to combine it with physicality and skating

Amy (chicago)

What do you think of Stalbergs play? Seems like he's finally settling into his roll and bringing energy.

Jesse Rogers
  (2:05 PM)

Yeah, think he's learning the game the way he should..depending on the role he brings something diff. coming along..amazing wheels

Chris (San Diego)

You forgot Frolic, sit Bickell down.

Jesse Rogers
  (2:05 PM)

yeah. put him in there...pisani always my first to sit..forgot. someone has to come out for sharp return

Roger (Chicago)

Do you think the hawks are saving their best for the playoffs?

Jesse Rogers
  (2:07 PM)

I dont think its a matter of "saving" their best i think its when we'll see thier best but there will be no sweeps..the playoffs will be a microcosm of the season in my opinion. heart attacks every night BUT that doesnt mean they cant come out on top..doesnt mean they will...thats the beauty and tragedy of it all! just dont know

Jesse Rogers
  (2:09 PM)

Thats going to do it for today...will follow up with the thornton stuff at practice tomorrow since alot of people seem to be on that..Prob juts the usual "hey u deserved it type of thing" but we'll see...anyway, thanks for all the questions. next week, last pre-playoff chat so be there and tell others this is the place to talk hawks! follow me on twitter @espnchihawks for all the news down the stretch..check out hte blog every day...this is the best time of yr. ! talk to ya tomorrow from practice..and then columbus. thanks again