Chicago Blackhawks Weeks in Review: March 3 – 16
Chicago Blackhawks: Weeks Seven and Eight
The streak has ended for the Chicago Blackhawks. They went half the season without a regulation loss before being felled twice in a row, but they rallied in a big way to end their seven game, two week run.
The fortnight started innocently enough with Marian Hossa’s 1000th game played against the Detroit Red Wings. Just when the game was about to be the end of the Blackhawks’ streak, Patrick Kane launched a power play goal to tie the game and later use his patented shootout move to win the game. Hossa was honored at home two days later for his milestone, and Bryan Bickell’s two goals, along with Kane’s game winner, secured the win against the Minnesota Wild.
Then came the Colorado Avalanche. First up was a home game in Chicago, and not only did Daniel Carcillo squeak in a clutch goal to win the game, but Ray Emery’s presence in net gave him an NHL record 10-start win streak. But two nights later, a visibly lagging team was beaten badly by the Avs. It happened again at home against the Edmonton Oilers, although the Blackhawks tried valiantly and fought back only to come up one goal short.
A three day break is what the team needed, and afterward they traveled to Ohio to face the Columbus Blue Jackets in what would be their last meeting as divisional and conference rivals. The game was held to one goal each, one of which was Johnny Oduya’s first of the season, and once again Kane deked his way to a shootout winner. Their last game of the fortnight was against the Dallas Stars, and it became a game of who would score next, with six players scoring eight goals.
What will the future hold for the Blackhawks in these last few weeks? No one knows. For now, just strap yourself in and enjoy the ride.
Kane Ties the Game
There were only a few minutes left in regulation when Jonathan Ericsson flipped the puck over the glass, causing a delay of game penalty. On the ensuing power play, Viktor Stalberg grabbed the puck and fired it to Patrick Kane, who sent it sailing past Jimmy Howard to tie the game.
The Deke Wins Again
There’s a reason why Patrick Kane is one of the Blackhawks’ go-to guys on the shootout, and he showed everyone why against the Red Wings. With a double kick and some stickhandling, Kane faked out Howard and potted the winning shootout goal.
Crawford Stops Detroit’s Best
It’s hard enough to stop Pavel Datsyuk in regulation, and it’s probably intimidating to see one of the best players in the league coming at you in a shootout. But Corey Crawford didn’t flinch, stopping Datsyuk, Damien Brunner and Henrik Zetterberg to help the Blackhawks win the game.
Team of Hossas
Marian Hossa played his 1000th game in Detroit, so the Blackhawks honored him at their next home game two days later. During warm-ups, the team wore his jersey on the ice. In a pregame ceremony, he was given a silver hockey stick and a portrait of him hoisting the Stanley Cup.
Bickell Doubles His Fun
Bryan Bickell’s not known for his playmaking prowess, but when the time’s right, he’ll get a point or two. In their game against the Wild, Bickell scored a pair of goals, one a rebound and the other a left circle shot from a Brandon Saad pass.
Kane Secures the Win
With the Wild scoring and bringing the score within one goal in the third, Patrick Kane extended the Blackhawks’ lead a minute later, sending his shot past backup goaltender Darcy Kuemper. It was enough to give the Hawks another win.
Emery Makes History
It wasn’t enough for the Blackhawks to make it to the halfway mark without a regulation loss and earn a franchise record 11th straight win. Lost in those stats was the fact that Ray Emery had become the first goaltender in NHL history to win his first 10 games of the season.
Carcillo’s Clutch Goal
The game with the Avs was tied at two in the last minute of the third period. Just when it looked like overtime was in store, Daniel Carcillo scored his first goal of the season with a backhand shot off a rebound and over a sprawled Semyon Varlamov. It was the perfect end to the last winning game of their 24-game streak.
Toews Strikes First
The second game against the Avs began on a good note, with Jonathan Toews scoring the first goal after a turnover. It was their first shot of the game, but it only signaled the Avalanche’s scoring deluge.
Not Crawford’s Night
Compounding to the Blackhawks’ woes was their goaltending. Corey Crawford tried, but he allowed five goals on 19 shots and was replaced by Emery at the beginning of the third period. It was the first sign of shakiness and uncertainty he’d shown in the season.
Kane’s Bookend Goals
The Blackhawks found themselves down by four goals to the Oilers after the first period. They came roaring back in the second, with Patrick Kane starting the four-goal scoring rush. His power play goal in the third period pulled them to within one goal, but they couldn’t tie the game.
Like Crawford in Denver, Ray Emery started in net for the game, and like Crawford, he was pulled after allowing three goals in the first eight minutes of the game. Crawford fared the same, allowing another goal in the first period and two in the second.
Oduya’s First Goal of the Season
Johnny Oduya is a sleeper on the Blackhawks. Since coming to the team in February 2012, he’s been an integral part of the team, especially on the penalty kill. His first goal of the season came against the Columbus Blue Jackets after a nice seam pass from Patrick Kane. Kane’s assist on the goal was his 400th career point.
Another Notch on the Shootout Belt
Sergei Bobrovsky was a beast in net, holding the Blackhawks to only one goal for the game and frustrating everyone who fired the puck at him. But it was Kane's patented shootout slowdown move that finally got the best of Bobrovsky.
The Spin-O-Rama in Action
Patrick Kane says he decided to “have a little fun” with the goal he scored to give the Blackhawks their eighth goal of the evening in Dallas. His spin-o-rama move before firing the puck backhanded was reminiscent of former Blackhawk player and coach Denis Savard. That’s because Savard himself taught Kane that move.
In a rush to the net, it took three chances to get the puck past Kari Lehtonen. First was Viktor Stalberg, then Andrew Shaw, but it was Nick Leddy who tipped the puck in for the goal. It would’ve been Leddy’s second of the night had Jonathan Toews not deflected the puck into the net on the Blackhawks’ first goal.