Blackhawks

Stress beginning to show for Dempster

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Stress beginning to show for Dempster

PITTSBURGH The last thing Ryan Dempster wanted to do was turn this into a LeBron James television special: The Decision.

But weve gotten closer to that point than Dempster ever expected, with his motivations and intentions dissected over the airwaves and in cyberspace.

Theres enough racing through Dempsters mind right now, on and off the field. Maybe this was a chance to get lost in the game again. But the stress is definitely beginning to show.

Dempster showed why he could be a difference-maker in a pennant race on Wednesday at PNC Park, but it wasnt enough in a 3-2 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates in front of 33,935 fans.

Dempster certainly wasnt happy, flipping a cooler and throwing a bottle in the dugout once he was done.

Fireworks went off in the first inning after Neil Walker drove Dempsters slider into the right-field seats. Dempster then got into a groove, retiring 13 consecutive batters before Michael McKenry hammered a ball off the foul pole in left.

Those two solo home runs were the only hits Dempster gave up until the sixth inning, when Garrett Jones reached down and lined a two-out double into right field to give the Pirates a 3-2 lead. That no doubt helped spark the tantrum from Dempster, who might be the most competitive player on the team.

Weve all been saying this for some time now. But Dempster may have thrown his last pitch in a Cubs uniform as he tries to steer a trade toward the Los Angeles Dodgers. Stay tuned.

Blackhawks edge out Senators in shootout: 'It was really nice to get a win'

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AP

Blackhawks edge out Senators in shootout: 'It was really nice to get a win'

It was a rare sight to see the Blackhawks in a shootout on Wednesday night.

It was just the second time this season — and first time at the United Center — that the Blackhawks made it past 3-on-3 overtime. 

The last came on Dec. 2, 2017, a 3-2 shootout loss to the Stars in Dallas. On Wednesday night, the Blackhawks were on the other end, beating the Ottawa Senators 3-2 in a seven-round shootout. Nick Schmaltz netted the game-winner.

"We'll take it," coach Joel Quenneville said. "I thought we had a decent game tonight. Overtime not so good, I liked the shootout victory, Fors made some big saves for us particularly as the game got deeper. Our third was OK, I thought our first two were way better, and overtime we gave up some high quality, some bells were rings for a bit there. But it was nice to see the shootout win."

Patrick Kane had a goal and an assist, recording another multi-point game, his 16th of the season.

"I mean we need every point we can get at this point," Kane said. "There's still belief in this locker room. Obviously we need to go on quite a run and have a big record here down the stretch. But take it a game at a time and nice to get two points."

Anton Forsberg was a big reason the Blackhawks even recorded those two points. The 25-year-old netminder stopped 34 of 36 shots and made a handful of big saves down the stretch.

"It was really nice to get a win for sure," Forsberg said. "I would love to have a lot more wins, but right now just gotta look forward and get as many wins as possible."

Added Quenneville: "I think it was good for him to win a game the way he did. Lot of shots were on the line, as we progressed, got deeper, hitting the point first was big for him and for us and then finding a way to get the extra one was a good win."

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Of Bulls and Blackhawks, which team will finish with higher draft pick?

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USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Of Bulls and Blackhawks, which team will finish with higher draft pick?

On the latest SportsTalk Live Podcast, Patrick Finley (Chicago Sun-Times), Hub Arkush (ProFootball Weekly) and Jason Goch (SB Nation) join Kap on the panel.

The guys debate which team will finish with a higher draft pick when the season ends: Bulls or Blackhawks?

Plus, hear their reaction to the MLB’s new pace-of-play rule change.

Listen to the full SportsTalk Live Podcast right here: