Penalties haunt Blackhawks in shootout loss to Blues


Penalties haunt Blackhawks in shootout loss to Blues

ST. LOUIS – In the matchup between the second- and third-place Central Division teams, special teams loomed large.

And while the Blackhawks will take the one point they did get, their shaky penalty kill left them frustrated and absent that other point.

Artemi Panarin tied the game late but Kevin Shattenkirk won it in a shootout as the St. Louis Blues beat the Blackhawks 3-2 on Wednesday night. The Blackhawks, thanks to that point, move back into first place in the Central Division. The Dallas Stars, Friday’s opponent, also has 88 points but the Blackhawks have two more regulation/overtime victories than the Stars.

The Blackhawks took a 1-0 lead into the third period but gave up two power-play goals. Former Blackhawks forward Troy Brouwer scored what was the go-ahead goal for the Blues at the time. The penalty kill’s issues, and the infractions that put the Blackhawks on them (too many men and holding), left coach Joel Quenneville frustrated.

[SHOP: Gear up, Blackhawks fans]

“I didn’t like it at all tonight,” Quenneville said of the kill. “I didn’t like the two penalties we took at the end, too.”

Jonathan Toews, who left briefly in the second period after colliding with a partially open door on the Blues’ bench – a hip flexor he said felt better as the game went on – said the Blackhawks need to shore things up on the kill.

“I think the majority of the game we played pretty well. We just need those timely penalty kills in the third and we didn’t get them,” said Toews, who assisted on Panarin’s late regulation goal. “We’ve got to be better. I think our focus has been there the last couple of games; I think our kill was really good against Detroit. It’s still something that we need to improve on big time.”

On the other side, the Blackhawks had their power-play chances too but could come up with just one on three opportunities. That included a lengthy power play when Ryan Reaves was given a five-minute charging and a game misconduct for his hit on Blackhawks defenseman Christian Ehrhoff. Andrew Ladd redirected Teuvo Teravainen’s shot for a 1-0 lead. Outside of that one, though, the Blues’ league-leading penalty kill held off the Blackhawks’ league-leading power play.

Still, after Corey Crawford vacated the net late in regulation, Panarin forced overtime with his 25th goal of the season. After a 3-on-3 overtime in which both teams looked drained from thephysical contest, the Blackhawks and Blues traded a few shootout goals. After Shattenkirk scored his, Teuvo Teravainen missed to seal it for the Blues.

[MORE: It's official: Blackhawks, Blues to clash in 2017 Winter Classic]

“That was a tough shootout,” said Crawford, who stopped 28 of 30 in regulation and overtime. “It was a fast game and playoff-type game. Itseems like we’re playing a lot of those lately. We’re in a great position, had some tough luck there on a couple power-play goals but I thought we played really well. Had a lot of chances.”

The Blackhawks did have their chances, but it’s what they gave up on the other end, on a penalty kill that’s been so good for the past several years, that had them disappointed.

“I think for the most part we played pretty well with the lead and I think we can always expect that they’re going to come hard at us,” Toews said. “So knowing that, in a way it’s disappointing we couldn’t come up with a second point.”

Podcast: Which Blackhawks could be on the move before trade deadline?


Podcast: Which Blackhawks could be on the move before trade deadline?

On the latest Blackhawks Talk Podcast, Adam Burish and Pat Boyle discuss which Blackhawks could be on the trading block and what players are building blocks for the Hawks future.

Burish also shares a couple memorable trade deadline days and his “near” return to the Blackhawks in 2012. Plus, he makes his bold trade deadline prediction for the Hawks.

Listen to the full Blackhawks Talk Podcast right here:

Blackhawks ban four ejected fans from future home games

Blackhawks ban four ejected fans from future home games

The Blackhawks have banned the four fans — who were ejected from Saturday's game against the Washington Capitals for their racist remarks towards Capitals forward Devante Smith-Pelly — from future home games.

On Monday, a Blackhawks spokesperson released this statement:

We have contacted the select individuals involved in the incident on Saturday to notify them that they are no longer welcome at our home games. Racist comments and other inappropriate behavior are not tolerated by the Chicago Blackhawks.

The Blackhawks also wanted to remind fans that they can alert security at the United Center by texting the following to 69050: UCASSIST <SPACE> followed by the seating section, row and a brief description of the issue.