Hawks lacking power play chances

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
 
 
Updated 12/7/2009 7:28 PM

The Blackhawks' power play ranked a respectable ninth in the NHL on Monday.

If only they would get to use it a little more often.

 

The Hawks have been on the power play only 98 times in 28 games, the fourth lowest total in the league.

By comparison, the Dallas Stars have been on the power play 133 times in 29 games.

"It's amazing that we're not getting the power play opportunities," winger Patrick Kane said. "As the game goes on you think there's calls that should be called that maybe would have been called a couple years ago that they're not really calling anymore.

"Especially with our team, we have the puck a lot and it's hard to believe we don't generate more power plays. It's something we're going to have to get better at."

Hawks coach Joel Quenneville equates drawing penalties with playing in the tough areas around the net, but he doesn't have a problem with the low number of opportunities.

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"At the same time, I don't think we've given the other team any power plays as well," Quenneville said. "I think a lot of the games are probably comparable. I don't think there's a big edge one way or another who's getting more power plays.

"It seems like special teams over the last stretch of games, there's one or two each way, which is very low in a lot of games."

The Hawks have been short-handed 97 times, which was fourth best in the league before Monday's games.

Refreshing change: The Hawks continue their stretch of four straight games against teams from the Eastern Conference on Wednesday when the New York Rangers come to the United Center.

The Hawks play in Buffalo on Friday before hosting Tampa Bay on Sunday.

"It's nice seeing some different teams," Joel Quenneville said. "Sometimes when you're not that familiar there night be more pace or maybe more freedom out there. I think once you get more familiar you're aware of the tendencies and it seems like it's more of a closer checking affair."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

The Hawks play six of their next seven games at home.

"We have to take advantage of it," Quenneville said. "We weren't happy with our last game against Nashville. We've got to get back to placing an emphasis on playing well at home and playing with some energy. I think Friday's game we didn't have the same pace we saw earlier in our home games."

Convention passes: Starting Wednesday at 10 a.m., fans can purchase passes for the third annual Blackhawks convention to be held the weekend of July 30-31 and Aug. 1, 2010, at the Hilton Chicago.

Passes can be purchased at the United Center box office, the Blackhawks Store (333 N. Michigan Ave.), and at all Ticketmaster outlets.

The Hilton also will begin taking room reservations on Wednesday at 877-865-5320, which includes two convention passes per room, per night.

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