Print and Go Back ESPN: SportsNation

December 14, 1:00 PM ET
Chat with Jesse Rogers

Jesse Rogers
  (1:00 PM)

Hi all. Welcome to our weekly Hawks chat. Thanks for joining in. Hawks and Wild did thier pregame stuff for tonight's showdown. 6:30 pm start time on versus...should be a good one. Great O v Great D. Fire away with questions. I've got answers!

Keith (Waupaca, WI)

What type of a D-man and/or Center do you think the Hawks will be looking to add via trade before the deadline? Examples?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:03 PM)

Have a bunch of these questions so Ill knock it now..Obviously, we have a ways to go till the deadline but for center, I believe it has to be a playmaking type noe necessarily a rugged guy...someone to set up hossa and sharp while moving kruger down (unless kruger is involved in the deal) unfortunately, there may not be many on the market. I hate to mention this name cause I know hes not popular but Olli Jokinen can set people up when he wants to play...I see firesales in calgary and carolina...carolina players oculd be had now and the other name would be former Hawk Ruutu but he's more rugged than a playmaker..but you could do worse...On D...

Jesse Rogers
  (1:04 PM)

Canes have 3 UFA's that could fit..Tim Gleason might be the best...can hit, block shots, simply provide better depth than the hawks 5-8 or 6-8 or whatever..not sure what spacek has left in tank but his style fits...so there are a couple...other than carolina, not sure a lot of teams will be sellers for a while..

Jose (Chicago)

How do you feel about Chelios. I loved him when he played for the Hawks, but when went to the Wings it broke my heart

Jesse Rogers
  (1:06 PM)

Seriously, so what he went to det.? He was traded first of all and maybe he had a hand in where he went but he "chose" them to be close to his family here. How can you fault that? How can you fault going to a winner? And how does that change how he played here. Was great. Won Norris. Think its petty and childish to think diff just cause he went to a rival..was fun to boo him when he played there...thats fine but to change your overall opinion. please...(sorry, you asked)

Greg (SW MO.)

So Ben Smith is back down & Bickell is back in. I hope he is capable of doing what needs to be done but after watching him for a season + I have my doubts. If he does not perform this time whats his fate ???????

Jesse Rogers
  (1:08 PM)

No doubt he could be a throw in as part of a trade or simply back to the bench..the good thing is they didnt waste a lot of money on him if he doesnt produce...he can be buried, traded, released, sent to minors, whatever...we'll see. but again, easily could see in a deal where another team figures it has nothing to lose but eveyrthing to gain by getting him..or maybe he comes through this time

Michael G. (VP)

So Ray Emery has started the past 2-3 games....I see no controversy, just riding the hot hand, but is it ANY coincidence that the penalty kill has been FANTASTIC in those 2-3 games?? Now I know the defense helps the goalie but is it the other way around this time? I see Emery making stops that Crawford wasn't for a bit there. Is this "part of THE process" or just part of A process?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:10 PM)

I dont think its a coincidence. Coaches say thier best plenalty killers are their goaltenders so why wouldnt it make sense...this isnt about controversey but about process as you say. IF there is a change in goal we'll look back at this strecth and remember it as the beginning of the change..has to start somewhere...read my stuff from over the weekend..I document how it will go down..but they will go back to craw as soon as emery falters and it will be crow's net to lose again...losing it a second time (if thats how you want to look at it) may result in a more permanent change...so process is def right word

Greg (SW MO.)

Last game @ the end of 3rd. period, #81 getting cross-checked in the back, #2 ends up with a bloody nose & no penalties WTF is going on with that ???????

Jesse Rogers
  (1:11 PM)

I dont know...Hossa was throwing punches too..I mean its a scrum..they could have called clowe but they didnt...dont lose sleep over it

russ (woodstock)

any idea what HOSS did to set off Clowe the other night?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:13 PM)

Hossa was getting whacked in the legs several times from behind and turned around and called him a coward for hitting from behind..this stuff was in my blog over last couple days..please read..but that's what happened

Remy (Chicago)

How do you feel about Kruger's play on the second line

Jesse Rogers
  (1:14 PM)

I mean I like it but dont love it..at least not yet...cant go trial and error with hossa and sharp on that line..need proven commodity...a year from now kruger might be ready for it but not sure he is now...at least not for the playoffs...maybe in 3 months he will be...kid is like a sponge in terms of learning so who knows...I think they want a center no matter what kruger does...helps in depth, etc.

Tim (Manteno IL)

Do you see the Hawks trying to make a trade to upgrade the goalie position? And if you were to speculate who do you see us trying to get?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:16 PM)

Boy, I dont think goalie is on their radar, at least not yet...only 1 of 2 has faltered and for a fairly short stint so lets see what happens here...nothing says emery cant do it for the year and nothing YET says craw wont rebound so lets wait on that right now..18-8-4 with what they have

Aaron (Winfield)

Jesse, which version of the Hawks will show up tonight? The Wild are leading the conference but the aren't a "sexy" opponent and don't have much in the way of star power. Can the Hawks continue to build off last week's results?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:18 PM)

Wish I knew..you;re right, wild arent sexy but the hawks usually get up for top tier opponents, as long as hawks consider wild that. first meeting against the teams...if the hawks dont play a little dump and chase they'll be in trouble..I ytalked to kane yesterday and he said sometimes you can skate through the trap and Im thinking and sometimes you leave the puck as youre doing so for a counter attack...really hard to predict this one..

Patrick (Chicago)

Any thoughts on why Crawford's game has dropped off since last year? Will sitting him push him or lose him? Also as an aside, are Bolland thoughts on the sisters and rest of Vancouver shared by others in the locker room?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:21 PM)

Seems mental with Crawford...little "in between" when it comes to decision like challenging a shooter or staying in crease,etc. There is something to getting paid and being the "guy" as opposed to the back-up...prob putting pressure on himself..but still believe for the moment this is a slump and not a year long thing but def could be wrong...as for bolland, etc. hes the type you can get him going on the sedins pretty easily..I think other hawks have less to say about sedins in general..bolland faces them so much, its almost become an easy act for him to call them "sisters" etc. not a big deal. When youre putting up 100 pts seasons you better get some respect but bolland def great against them in playoffs

Frank (Naperville)

do you envision the checking line to be Frolik-Bolland-Kruger come playoff time?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:23 PM)

Good question. Little early...still think they would want last year's line of 29-36-67 and let kruger play center on 4th but by then Kruger may have advanced far enough to be closer to what he's doing now so its possible...and 29 could be anywhere at that point...anyway, long way to go but it a scenario I could see happeneing..though I think 16 is def more effective in the middle

Con (Chicago, IL)

We probably all agree that the D situation for the Hawks is not great. So now in hindsight, do you think trading Brian Campbell away was the right now? I guess my question is which is more important for the Hawks? Having more cap space or better D-man playing for them?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:25 PM)

Still the right deal...you say its not perfect yet the team is 18-8-4....point being they have "made" up for it in whatever way they need to and now can spen that money on specific needs closer to deadline...I dont think there is a scenario where I will say it was wrong to trade a player making 7 mil --at least in Q's mind--that didnt play pk, wasnt on the ice at end of close games, wasnt a HUGE factor on pp...always seocnd unit..just too much money tied up in a sort of, I said sort of One-dimensional player...though hid D got better under Q

Nate (Chicago)

Can you give quick grades to the D men right now? Keith, Seabrook, Hammer, Leddy, Montador, O'Donnell as of right now?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:27 PM)

Hmm, off the top of my head, based on play and expectations...2=B, 7=B, 4=B, 8=A-, 5=C, 6=C-

Nick (Vancouver, BC)

What will be the top line tonight? I like Toews, Kane, and Bickell. Stalberg is not getting the job done. Where does Stalberg belong? With Bolland and Frolik or Mayers and Brunette?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:29 PM)

Not sure how you can say Stalberg isnt gettin the job done in same sentence you believe bickell belongs there...I dont love stalberg there but he's best option right now..would have liked to seen smith there for a run...but 25 has been ok..36,29,15 are together...and 22,13,67

Peter (South Loop)

Jesse,Before the Hawks give up some young talent for a veteran do you see them giving some guys from Rockford a chance to play at the big league level? I'm specifically thinking about Morin - who showed he can compete at this level last year. Certainly guys like Bickell, Stalberg, Smith, Brunette haven't made themselves "must start" this year, so why not let the kids show what they have? Would guys like Hayes and Olsen be worth giving a shot?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:31 PM)

It sounds great but a lot harder in reality..im not saying a couple wont or deserve a chance but olsen cant just come up and play a reg shift in my opinion...if he does it will be after new year sometime as they did with leddy and hammer in past...sure, morin will prob get a look but those players u mentioned are signed to one way deals and for the most part are going to play...theres always a chance a player in minors is being held back cause of a nunmbers game but thats the risk of it all..but there is no reason to mess a whole lot up with the good record they have...but you do want to get better

Bryan C (Columbus)

Now that we're another 10 games away from halfway through the season, who among the single-year contract folks do you like so far, and who do you see possibly sticking around next year?I'm not fully sure on Carcillo, less sure on Brunette, but I see no reason to let Mayers go. I think Jamal has been a great fit with his energy, tough presence in our own zone, and the occasional fight.

Jesse Rogers
  (1:33 PM)

I would prob agree with you...Mayers and I guess Emery at this point...Im lukewarm on carcillo...no brunette, no o'donnell, im guessing both retire after this season...o'donnell for sure..brunette might try to hang on but doubt it will be here...mayers another one year on 4th line works for me

Nate (Chicago)

What's the third line for D men look like tonight? More Lepisto?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:34 PM)

My guy in minny says john scott in for lepisto...

Brandon (Hammond)

Hi Jessie, love the blogs. With the NHL moving forward with realignment next year, we'll be playing divisional teams on a more regular basis. Do you think the make-up of the team will need to be altered in order to better compete against the more physical teams in our division?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:35 PM)

No, why wont those teams alter thier rosters for the Hawks? With the core in place the hawks are a speed, transitioin team (as much as they can be) not built ot play in own zone so they will add to thier strength not change in my opinion

Landry (Chicago)

Favorite team to watch other than the Hawks?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:36 PM)

I like Pitt with or without Crosby...I like SJ cause I think Niemi is great and like watching him play...like edm as well...young and fast

Matt (Cube)

My favorite thing about these chats are the OVER-reactions by these questions and then you bringing them back to Earth. I think the most important thing about this team is that they did not repeat last year's start (like you've acknowledge) What are some other statements you want to make to the over reactors?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:38 PM)

Well, that being more and more around this team I think we're going to see similiar for a few years...a team that knows its good and will prob not take the first 82 games as seriously as we want them too but the next potential 28 is where they will make their legacy...yeah they might win a divison or two or presidents trophy when things magically come together including a nice schuedle but this core is about the spring..not to say they will just float through 6 months but take everything with a grain unless there is REAL reson to panic

Jesse Rogers
  (1:39 PM)

take out the "that" in first sentence...sorry

Janice (Naperville, IL)

LOVE your "5 Questions with..." blogs. Are you planning to make this a weekly deal? (I hope so.)

Jesse Rogers
  (1:40 PM)

If not weekly, prob every other or so...just about time...need enough to do that plus video plus audio plus news plus, plus, plus....but people do like that junk!

Ilija (Arizona)

Why does everyone hate on Brunette? He has been arguably the best PP weapon on an otherwise weak PP this year?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:42 PM)

He's been ok. He has good hands and stands in front..maybe a bit overpaid to do that but he's kind of on his reg pace almost...it was obvious he couldnt keep up with top line guys so when youre down to one thing well thats where people come down on a 2 mil player..HOWEVER, I will say he's smart out there..ive seen some nice back checks..he's the type that will be better in clutch than in normal 5 on 5 so youre right there is some value there no doubt

Matt (Western Springs)

Any chance we can see Frolik get a shot up with the 1st line. He's been in a slump yes, but stalberg has been fine there and they could use and upgrade and maybe the key to getting Frolik back to that 20+ goal a year guy he was in florida is giving him a shot with Kane and Toews

Jesse Rogers
  (1:43 PM)

Ya know they gave him a game there and it didnt work..you have to earn it..ben smith never got a chance there cause he didnt earn it..bickell isnt there and neither is frolik cause they havent..at least not lately..i dont diagree with your premise, sometimes a guy can be "unlocked" playing with skilled players but tough for a coach just to hand it to him

Grant (Wheaton)

Leddy seemed to play his best game of the year on Sun and was rewarded with 24 minutes. Is he finally figuring it out?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:44 PM)

He was very good and then I put him in my slumping segment!! (only cause I cant keep going to bickell and frolik..or can I?) also wrote that before sunday's game but points have been slow lately...leddy and kruger are improving just fine..will still take a lot of games to say he's completely arrived but hes moving in right direction for sure..

Josh (Deerfield, IL)

Should it be a concern that our big 4 (Toews, Sharp, Hossa, Kane) are the only one's really producing offensively? I know all teams get a bulk of their scoring from their top-6...but nobody else seems to be putting up points.

Jesse Rogers
  (1:46 PM)

Yeah, its always a concern if your offense is concentrated to one thing like pp or top lines only or whatever..so they need that 3rd line to get going and its all on bolland IMO. He's hurt or unmotivated or whatever..luckily we know he'll be great in playoffs so can always rely on that

Adam (Bloomington, IN)

How does Ben Smith go from being a huge dirty area, playoff player to being sent down? Give him a chance in Frolik's place

Jesse Rogers
  (1:48 PM)

What I dont get is he was playing in the top 6 with skilled guys last year and had success..why not just TRY him there for a game or two even if he underwhelmed some when he first came up...you going to lose the season replacing stalberg with smith? frolik is on the 4th line right now..anyway, paying frolik too much and smith is on a two-way..point being, all things NEAR equal its frolik who gets benefit of doubt

Grant (Wheaton)

Can the Hawks be successful in the long haul without getting more secondary scoring?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:49 PM)

Not AS successful as you might want but yes they can. core is good enough to carry or what not but they will need to spread it out...just the way it works..teams will load up on top lines (if they can)..so good record either way..GREAT record if they get 4 lines rolling

Ilija (Arizona)

Living here in AZ, I see alot of Shane Doan on tv....I think he would be a really good acquisition for the Hawks at the deadline. My question is: Do you think he will be available if the Yotes are still in the playoff junt by the deadline, and what would it cost the Hawks to get him?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:50 PM)

If they are in the hunt I doubt they will trade him...prob take a good prospect or two plus a pick..maybe throw in bickell, etc.

Adam (Chicago)

Do the Hawks have a fundamental issue evaluating goalies?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:52 PM)

Now this is a complicated question..make sure I word this correctly but IF, IF, IF Q has a "weakness" from lack of a better word, its in this dept. He's pretty simple when it comes to goalies...like we would make a change, so does he..which is fine but there is a mental part of this game with goalies thats hard to handle..point being he's had this issue in st. louis, colorado, and now maybe 3 yrs in a row here..there is something there...and it affected the bigger story with niemi leaving in my opinon but I think where there is smoke there is fire..but very hard to detail cause how do we measure it unless a goalie goes on record syaing he's been mishandled which they wont...just not his strength in my opinion

Aaron (Winfield)

Jesse, the number of superstars out with concussions right now is pretty glaring. Crosby, Giroux, Pronger, Michalek, etc. 3 of them were hurt accidentally hitting their own teammate. Do you think the NHL will ever switch to Olympic-sized rinks to reduce incidental collisions?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:54 PM)

That would only have guys going faster since there is more ice which means harder collisions. I dont see that as a solution

Jesse Rogers
  (1:55 PM)

Peopl with trade questions..read my first answer...If you want names..how about Tim Gleason of Carolina and Olli Jokinen of Cgy...there arent a lot of good centers that will be avail..its just tough to pry away...just looking at teams we know will be trading right now...plenty of time...

Eric (Chicago)

More love for Niemi...jeez Jesse. Just kidding, watched Twitter blow up because of Niemi comments. Can't help the way you feel!

Jesse Rogers
  (1:56 PM)

Thats right. Im just honest. Like watching the guy play goal. he's gotten better since leaving too..oh well

Vince (Burnaby)

What would it take to get a guy like Gleason/Spacek to move down the guys playing above their head on D?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:57 PM)

but pick a prospect...morin, olsen, kruger, etc. maybe not even that much but it will take something along those lines...everyone wants D, who can give a good player back at the prospect level gets their man...so all those guys, even smith are trade bait in my opinion

Jay (Chicago)

Thoughts on the Crosby situation?

Jesse Rogers
  (1:58 PM)

Just awful. Still not convinced on any reason there are more concussions nowadays...maybe more being reported i guess...rules changes 6 years ago? I dont know but it sucks. the game is going to have a drastic change cause of this..seems like its coming...someone make a damn helmet that will prevent this please!

Jesse Rogers
  (2:00 PM)

That's it for today..great questions..really well done...email me at jrogers@espnchicago.com if you didnt get yours answered...follow me on twitter @espnchihawks for all the latest news, views, and entertainment. same time next week i think..hopefully crosby play in that game next tues. check out blog today..have a one on on audio interview with a.brunette playing back in minny plsu preview stuff...also postgame blogs tonight as well! take care..should be a good one tonight