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Raanta edges Jones in backup battle as Chicago beats L.A.

Dec 30, 2013, 10:54 PM EDT

Both the Chicago Blackhawks and Los Angeles Kings have generally fared well despite losing big-money starting goalies to injuries, but Martin Jones has generated more headlines than his counterpart Antti Raanta.* Raanta stole the spotlight on Monday, however, as Chicago slipped by Los Angeles 1-0.

Brandon Saad‘s early first period goal ended up being the only tally of the game, as both netminders did their job tonight:

That’s the first shutout of Raanta’s career and Chicago’s first goose egg of the season.

It was a hard-hitting, tight game as the Kings made life difficult for the Blackhawks (45-30 hits, according to the box score), yet Chicago obviously got the last laugh.

The Blackhawks now have a seven-game point streak (5-0-2) and have mopped up points since Dec. 8 (8-1-2 in 11 games). On the other end, the Kings might worry a little bit about their offense drying up; Los Angeles is on a three-game losing streak in which the Kings have only scored four goals. All three of those contests ended in regulation, too.

(Just imagine if Jones wasn’t winning the goalie battles most nights …)

* – And with good reason, really, as Jones came into Monday’s match with a whopping .953 save percentage while Chicago might have been carrying Raanta, who had a mediocre .906 mark before tonight’s game.

  1. esracerx46 - Dec 30, 2013 at 11:05 PM

    1 goal in the battle of the undrafteds. Even the professional scouts miss. Awesome game. Wish it would have opened up sooner than it did.

    • joey4id - Dec 31, 2013 at 2:47 PM

      was it less appreciated because no one fought?

  2. blackhawksdynasty - Dec 30, 2013 at 11:10 PM

    Well Blom…. begin your rant….

    I thought it was a good game all around. Nice to see Chicago can win without scoring 5 goals.

    A shutout?!?! IN CHICAGO!!!???!!! I was wondering if we’d see one of those all year. Well played game defensively. Congrats to Raanta!

    • patthehockeyfan - Dec 31, 2013 at 8:19 AM

      Can’t disagree with you. While I won’t write that it was a ‘good’ game (Kings’ fan here), it was extremely well-played by both teams. Very exciting – lack of scoring not being a factor.

  3. hrudey - Dec 30, 2013 at 11:16 PM

    Heck of a game all around, full credit to Chicago for the victory. Even though I think it’s the worst matchup in the league for the Kings, I kind of want to see these teams meet up in the postseason – especially if we’re treated to efforts like tonight’s.

  4. endusersolutions2013 - Dec 30, 2013 at 11:33 PM

    The stat on Raanta is somewhat deceiving, as he’s had two bad games amoung his starts.

  5. endusersolutions2013 - Dec 30, 2013 at 11:35 PM

    Let’s hope this game inspires the ‘hawks to tighten up defensively, as they’ve really slipped since being the #1 team defensively last year, with most of the players back.

    Good to see them not give up any on the PK tonight, their biggest deficency this year.

  6. blomfeld - Dec 30, 2013 at 11:59 PM


    Friends, I couldn’t watch this game live, however I did monitor developments ‘electronically’ from afar. And by all accounts, it sounds like we ‘gave it our all’ which sadly wasn’t enough in the end. Despite the very ‘best’ goal tending & defense in the business today, there’s ‘something’ which is holding us back with scoring ? … and I’ll be damned as to what ‘exactly’ that is ? Could a Judas or a Quisling be among our ranks ? I honestly don’t know ? … and yet I’m convinced that there’s definitely ‘something’ working against us here ?

    Anyway, we don’t play again until Thursday when we meet those ‘primates’ of Saint Louis … you know, the ones who we liquidated last year in the first round of the playoffs. So hopefully between now and then, comrades Lombardi and Sutter will have a chance to see what ‘exactly’ is going on here ? Tell you one thing, when we do discover the source of our scoring woes, you can bet your bottom dollar that such problem will be ‘dealt with’ post haste !

    GO KINGS GO !!! … TODAY, TOMORROW AND FOREVER !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    as for Chicago’s ‘little’ 1-0 win tonight ? … well you can stick that right back where it came from !

    • endusersolutions2013 - Dec 31, 2013 at 12:14 AM

      Blom, I’m not a Blues fan at all, and you are likely amiss in your dismissal of them.

      Blues, Sharks and Pens have shown the most offensive and defensive balance this year.

      They did not make any MAJOR changes over the off season, but they are clearly better than last year.

    • jhaegs - Dec 31, 2013 at 7:05 AM

      Hey ‘blomfeld’, you’re an ‘idiot’. Do I sound ‘smarter’ when I type like ‘this’?

      Primates? I’m sure you intended that to be an insult, but the fact is, all humans are primates. Ever here of a h0m0 sapien? I know you’re familiar with the name used for the ‘genus’, but please don’t disregard the ‘species’. I won’t even mention the h0m0 erectus, because I don’t want you to get too excited. Your team is full of Neanderthals (was that the word you were looking for?). A bunch of goons that probably celebrated tonight for out hitting the Blackhawks. Your “captain” is a glorified 3rd or 4th liner, and has amassed a whopping 13 points this year. He got his butt handed to him tonight and choked on a penalty shot. I honestly hope someone goes knee on face against him, and puts him out. He deserves nothing less for his cheap shots, and his face is insulting to look at. I actually cheered for Andrew Shaw tonight after I saw him try to take out Brown a few times. He about picked his head on one hit, but unfortunately missed.

      There was nothing honorable about this loss. You gave the Hawks their first shutout, even when they’re missing their top 2 goalies….

      As always, “Shutup blomfeld”

      • jhaegs - Dec 31, 2013 at 7:15 AM

        *hear (before the grammar Nazis catch it) 😉

      • comeonnowguys - Dec 31, 2013 at 7:48 AM

        Don’t worry. You didn’t use line breaks. Likely not even read.

      • patthehockeyfan - Dec 31, 2013 at 8:25 AM

        Hey, jhaegs. I neither thumbed up nor down your comment.

        Yes, blomfeld is annoying. I’m a Kings’ fan, and he’s irritating as hell sometimes.

        I caution, though, wishing injury on a player (Brown, in this case). As I’ve written in other posts, karma is a b*tch, and it’ll come back at you.

        P.S. I DID read your entire comment, lack of line-breaks aside.

      • endusersolutions2013 - Dec 31, 2013 at 12:23 PM

        jhegs, I’m in complete agreement with you on the clueless wonders who value grammar and spelling over actual content, in a format that is inherently INFORMAL communication. Talk about majoring on minors

      • jhaegs - Dec 31, 2013 at 5:10 PM

        If karma exists, Brown WILL get kneed in the face…

      • jhaegs - Dec 31, 2013 at 6:18 PM

        I counted 4 line breaks…

    • slysipops - Dec 31, 2013 at 10:38 AM


    • endusersolutions2013 - Dec 31, 2013 at 11:44 AM

      Blomfeld, while often articulate, posts out of perceptions and beliefs. I don’t remember him ever posting actual objective substantiation for anything he posts here.

      Kings are clearly one of th better teams i the league and are very likely to make the playoffs, good chance of getting past round 1.

      And objectively the Blues are a better team this year. I could post lots of detail, and likely get a boatload of cheapshots, so I’ll keep it simple.

      Here are the top 9 teams in the league, with both their % of possible points and their Strength Of Schedule. I’m listing them in an order that includes both key #s.
      Team % Possible SOS
      Blues .750 11
      Hawks .750 20
      Ducks .743 17 (I’d place them on the same line as the Hawks)
      Sharks .718 3 (Sharks have the best record against top 10 teams)
      Pens .719 26
      Bruins .69 28
      Kings .675 21
      Canucks .65 16
      Bolts .641 18

      Also, Sagarin (sports geek) ranks Blues 1, ‘Hawks 2, Kings 7th

  7. muckleflugga - Dec 31, 2013 at 7:46 AM

    careful blomfeld…

    jhaegs will be telling you how he did your 93 year old mother next

    he bad

    • endusersolutions2013 - Dec 31, 2013 at 12:26 PM

      And he’s a little more factually based

  8. slysipops - Dec 31, 2013 at 10:47 AM

    WOW! what a game ! both goalies looked great! it might not have been as exciting as a 6-5 scoring battle, but for a change we got to enjoy a real defensive gem by both teams ….. it was like APRIL in DECEMBER ! GO HAWKS GO !!!

    • patthehockeyfan - Dec 31, 2013 at 10:52 AM

      A thumbs up, and a P.S. GO KINGS GO!!!!

      • slysipops - Jan 1, 2014 at 12:19 PM


  9. blomfeld - Dec 31, 2013 at 11:41 AM


    I’m here friends as I’ll never be one to turn and run, even in defeat …

    take care and happy new year to everyone !!! … even this Jhag creature !!!!!!!!!!!!! :) :) :)

    • patthehockeyfan - Dec 31, 2013 at 11:55 AM

      You’re one of a kind, blom.

      Happy New Year!

      • slysipops - Jan 1, 2014 at 12:21 PM

        DITTO … FROM THE SLY !

    • endusersolutions2013 - Dec 31, 2013 at 12:30 PM

      So I take it you’d rather receive “have you considered…” and witty digs to “in your face *&^^&#” responses?

  10. joey4id - Dec 31, 2013 at 12:06 PM

    Unfortunately this game was not available in my region, and I hope Rogers Media will make all games available when the new deal kicks in. I’m not surprised by the low score. Both teams are very well coached and tough to beat when healthy and playing at their best. Hope to see them play each other in the playoffs.

    • endusersolutions2013 - Dec 31, 2013 at 12:29 PM

      I’d be in COMPLETE agreement, as that would mean that the series was the WC championship, and that the Hawks had gotten there and the Ducks had not.

  11. joey4id - Dec 31, 2013 at 2:49 PM

    Did anyone miss the lack of fighting in this game? Were there more cheap shots than usual?

    • endusersolutions2013 - Dec 31, 2013 at 3:05 PM

      One of the reasons is it was a Hawks game. Seriously, there had the least PIM last year, and are 26th this year. Total suspensions last year – 1 day. Keith in the WC finals. While he deserved the suspension, it was a reaction to a Carter intentional slash on Keith’s bare hand as he attempted to pick up his glove while skating next to Carter. Carter was not penalized or suspended, and I suspect Keith only got 1 game as it was real clear what led to the retribution move.

    • dt58 - Dec 31, 2013 at 5:01 PM

      Enough with your “get fighting out of hockey” campaign. I understand the whole concern about CTE but these guys are adults. If they don’t want to fight, then don’t. If you’re not talented enough to actually play and don’t want to fight, I guess you’ll have to be like the rest of us grown ups and get an actual job that we may or may not enjoy but need to do to pay the bills (you know, being an adult and taking responsibilities for our own choices and actions). Many many people out there do jobs that they risk their safety/life everyday and get paid far less in the process. Should all those jobs be banned too?

      Don’t get me wrong, I really don’t care one way or the other about fighting but I’m sick of hearing this CTE crap. Players are aware of it now and the choice should be theirs. If they are willing to risk their safety/mental health for a large paycheque, then let them. That’s they’re choice as an adult. Besides, more concussions are caused by hits (player vs player and player vs ice) than fights. Should we remove hitting from the game too?

      This is their job and that is the job description. If you don’t want to do it, don’t take the job.

      • joey4id - Jan 1, 2014 at 2:38 AM

        I understand your point of view, and respect it. However, you’re way off with your comment about more concussions being caused by hits than fights. The NHL dept. has already published the numbers contrary to your beliefs.

  12. dt58 - Jan 2, 2014 at 7:04 PM

    Joey, I understand what you’re saying but do you really think the league would announce that hits were the problem? That would be directly shooting yourself in the foot. I trust the league “findings” as much as I trust the government “findings”. I know they’re different sports, but this whole CTE thing got its momentum from football…no fights. Wasn’t it the Parros fight that got everyone up in arms? I’d be willing to bet that it was his head bouncing off the ice that did it. Again though, they know the risks. I don’t necessarily enjoy watching fights so instead of complaining and whinny to UFC, I just choose not to watch. I’d much rather see them get rid of 4-6 teams and get rid of the less talented players that are “on the cusp” and aren’t really there on skill. Get rid of the cheap garbage and fighting will be much less common

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