Blackhawks

Ben Bishop holds off Blackhawks as Lightning take a 2-1 series lead

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Ben Bishop holds off Blackhawks as Lightning take a 2-1 series lead

Something was bothering Ben Bishop. The Blackhawks could see it. The media could see it. Everyone watching from the United Center, from home or from a local establishment could see it.

For the first 20 minutes, the Blackhawks tried to exploit Bishop’s issue, the one that had him getting up slowly and moving gingerly. They got one. They missed on others. And by game’s end Bishop, injury be damned, was celebrating another road victory.

Brandon Saad scored his seventh goal of the postseason but the Lightning came with two in the third as they beat the Blackhawks 3-2 in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final on Monday night. The Blackhawks, who lost just their second game at home this postseason, trail 2-1 in the best-of-seven series heading into Game 4 on Wednesday night.

Johnny Oduya missed part of the second period and some of the third. Coach Joel Quenneville said he’ll see how the defenseman is doing on Tuesday. Trevor van Riemsdyk played in his first NHL game since Nov. 16, logging nine minutes.

[MORE: Five Things to take away from Blackhawks' Game 3 loss]

The Lightning are now 8-3 on the road; their last loss away from home was Game 1 against the New York Rangers in the Eastern Conference Final.

For the Blackhawks, it was missed opportunities coupled with defensive lapses at awful times. Saad’s goal gave them a 2-1 lead early, prompting a boisterous celebration from the crowd. But it was short-lived, as the Blackhawks’ propensity to give up goals too quickly after they’ve scored struck again. Ondrej Palat scored just 13 seconds after Saad, eliminating the Blackhawks’ lead and taking the life out of the United Center.

“Just a couple of bad habits that ended up hurting us. We’re all responsible for that,” Jonathan Toews said. “This game could’ve been similar to the way we stole Game 1 from them. We feel like we had a lot of chances, especially early in the game. Late in the game we gave up those odd-man rushes we’ve been talking about that end up in the back of our net.”

At the start, however, it was what the Blackhawks couldn’t put in the back of Bishop’s net. Bishop’s status was up in the air entering Game 3, given he left Game 2 with a mysterious injury. His pain was evident early; Bishop was favoring his left leg, stretching it out whenever he got the chance and getting up slowly after several plays. The Blackhawks fired 19 shots at him and Bishop gave up plenty of rebounds off them. There were the missed shots, too: Marian Hossa, on a play he was tripped, missed a wide-open net from the slot.

“The rebound came up to me and I tried to fake to the shot right away and cut in the middle,” Hossa said. “And as soon as I tried to finish it, I felt like I was tripped and I lost the balance a little bit and I didn’t shoot the puck the way I wanted to.”

[NBC SPORTS SHOP: Gear up, Blackhawks fans]

Brad Richards broke through, his power-play shot glancing off Bishop’s glove and in to tie it 1-1 at the time. But whatever momentum the Blackhawks built up didn’t transition over to the second period.

“The second period we took a dip, got into some penalty trouble, gave them some momentum,” Richards said. “Play that first period over again and we might have a few more; couple open nets we missed. We played the game wewanted to in the first and then overall, a pretty good game, but they capitalized on a couple mistakes.”

Indeed, the Palat goal was deflating – “two games in a row we had the lead, short-lived two times, two tough losses in a row,” Quenneville said. The Blackhawks had better chances in the third but Bishop got everything before Paquette scored the game-winner.

Bishop was struggling early. The Blackhawks didn’t get to him as much as they could have. In a close series, a team has to take advantage of every opportunity, or every ailing goalie. The Blackhawks just didn’t do enough of that on Monday.

“This one hurts a little bit tonight,” Richards said. “But we’ll just focus on winning a game and making it a best-of-3. That’s all you can ever ask for.”

Jonathan Toews releases powerful statement on George Floyd's death, mass protests

Jonathan Toews releases powerful statement on George Floyd's death, mass protests

Chicago athletes — both former and current, including Michael Jordan — have been speaking out following the death of George Floyd and the mass protests that ensued over the weekend. Jonathan Toews joined that group on Monday, sharing a powerful statement on Instagram.

Here's what the Blackhawks captain had to say:

View this post on Instagram

A lot of people may claim these riots and acts of destruction are a terrible response. I’ll be the first to admit that as a white male that was also my first reaction. But who am I to tell someone that their pain is not real? Especially when it is at a boiling point and impossible to hold in anymore. It’s obviously coming from a place of truth. This reaction isn’t coming out of thin air. I’m not condoning or approving the looting, but are we really going to sit here and say that peaceful protesting is the only answer? There has been plenty of time for that, and if it was the answer we would’ve given it our full attention long ago. Listen to these two men debate. They are lost, they are in pain. They strived for a better future but as they get older they realize their efforts may be futile. They don’t know the answer of how to solve this problem for the next generation of black women and men. This breaks my heart. I can’t pretend for a second that I know what it feels like to walk in a black man’s shoes. However, seeing the video of George Floyd’s death and the violent reaction across the country moved me to tears. It has pushed me to think, how much pain are black people and other minorities really feeling? What have Native American people dealt with in both Canada and US? What is it really like to grow up in their world? Where am I ignorant about the privileges that I may have that others don’t? Compassion to me is at least trying to FEEL and UNDERSTAND what someone else is going through. For just a moment maybe I can try to see the world through their eyes. Covid has been rough but it has given us the opportunity to be much less preoccupied with our busy lives. We can no longer distract ourselves from the truth of what is going on. My message isn’t for black people and what they should do going forward. My message is to white people to open our eyes and our hearts. That’s the only choice we have, otherwise this will continue. Let’s choose to fight hate and fear with love and awareness. Ask not what can you do for me, but what can I do for you? Be the one to make the first move. In the end, love conquers all. #blacklivesmatter

A post shared by Jonathan Toews (@jonathantoews) on

A lot of people may claim these riots and acts of destruction are a terrible response. I’ll be the first to admit that as a white male that was also my first reaction.

But who am I to tell someone that their pain is not real? Especially when it is at a boiling point and impossible to hold in anymore. It’s obviously coming from a place of truth. This reaction isn’t coming out of thin air.

I’m not condoning or approving the looting, but are we really going to sit here and say that peaceful protesting is the only answer? There has been plenty of time for that, and if it was the answer we would’ve given it our full attention long ago.

Listen to these two men debate. They are lost, they are in pain. They strived for a better future but as they get older they realize their efforts may be futile. They don’t know the answer of how to solve this problem for the next generation of black women and men. This breaks my heart.

I can’t pretend for a second that I know what it feels like to walk in a black man’s shoes. However, seeing the video of George Floyd’s death and the violent reaction across the country moved me to tears. It has pushed me to think, how much pain are black people and other minorities really feeling? What have Native American people dealt with in both Canada and US? What is it really like to grow up in their world? Where am I ignorant about the privileges that I may have that others don’t?

Compassion to me is at least trying to FEEL and UNDERSTAND what someone else is going through. For just a moment maybe I can try to see the world through their eyes. Covid has been rough but it has given us the opportunity to be much less preoccupied with our busy lives. We can no longer distract ourselves from the truth of what is going on.

My message isn’t for black people and what they should do going forward. My message is to white people to open our eyes and our hearts. That’s the only choice we have, otherwise this will continue.

Let’s choose to fight hate and fear with love and awareness. Ask not what can you do for me, but what can I do for you? 
Be the one to make the first move. In the end, love conquers all.

#blacklivesmatter

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Blackhawks' Zack Smith issues statement following death of George Floyd, protests

Blackhawks' Zack Smith issues statement following death of George Floyd, protests

On Monday, Blackhawks forward Zack Smith tweeted out a statement in the wake of George Floyd's death and the mass protests that ensued over the weekend.



Smith's full message read: 

"As a privileged white man playing in the NHL (a predominately white league) I feel it's as important now as ever to show support for the black community and encourage change. If you think the current way black people and other minorities are treated here today is ok.... you are a racist. If you don't have an opinion or are 'neutral' on this subject then you are ignorant and very misinformed. 

"I strongly disagree with rioting and looting of homes and small businesses but if you resent this movement because of the actions of a few vandals then you are missing the point entirely. As hockey players we sometimes come off as robots in our interviews and stay clear of opinions on most social issues and controversy. 

"Personally I don't like posting my opinions on social media these days for several reason(s). However with the amount of racist people (especially those in positions of power) being exposed during this movement I felt the need to show my support for the black community and the need for change. Please be safe and take care of each other out there."

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Blackhawks easily on your device.