Updated: 10:58 p.m.
The opportunities were there for the Chicago Blackhawks to get one past Los Angeles goaltender Jonathan Quick, and some of them were fantastic. But Quick had an answer for every one of them.
Quick stopped 38 shots for his NHL-leading fifth shutout of the season, and Trent Hunter and Jarret Stoll scored in the Kings 2-0 victory over the Blackhawks. It was a rare loss for the Blackhawks this month (9-2-1), and only the second time theyve fallen to the Kings in their last 12 meetings.
Coach Joel Quenneville praised both goaltenders Corey Crawford stopped 36 of 38. But he wasnt too happy with the officiating on the Kings two goals.
I thought both their goals shouldve been whistled down. There shouldve been infractions on both, said Quenneville, who thought there was goaltending interference on the first goal and a slew foot on the second. Clearly the refereeing tonight was tough to watch, but we still had a lot of chances at the other end, and unfortunately youre not going to win the game when you dont score a goal.
Replays showed that Kings right wing Justin Williams did slew-foot Blackhawks defenseman Nick Leddy right before Stoll scored.
But as Quenneville said, you still have to score a goal on the other end to have a chance. And the Blackhawks couldnt. They had some good opportunities, from early power plays to late Patrick Sharp shots. But nothing got through Quick or, in some cases, his teammates.
There were a lot of rebounds sitting right there but those guys were diving and saving them with sticks and shin pads, I dont know how (the pucks) stayed out, said Viktor Stalberg, whose four-game point streak was snapped. Sometimes you end up on the losing side. Our shot selection couldve been better but sometimes you run into a hot goaltender.
Crawford was once again strong for the Blackhawks. He came up big throughout the game, especially when the Blackhawks were killing off six minutes worth of penalties in the first 10 minutes of the game. He also stalled a Mike Richards penalty shot late in the second period.
But the Blackhawks couldnt get anything on the other end.
Give (Quick) credit: hes a good goaltender and he made some pretty good stops out there. But youd have to say he had a horseshoe you-know-where on a few of those plays, Jonathan Toews said. He was making some big stops out there that, I dont know if it just got to us, that we felt that the puck just wouldnt go in tonight, and that trend kept going in the third period.
The Blackhawks had their chances. Theyve converted on them more times than not recently. Sometimes, you just get bested by a hot goaltender.
I think its one of those nights when we played as good as the opponent. Their goalie played unbelievable, Marian Hossa said. We had some quality chances and he made big saves. He basically won the game for them.