Blackhawks

Blackhawks: Andrew Shaw bringing life to third line

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Blackhawks: Andrew Shaw bringing life to third line

The spark that ignited Andrew Shaw’s game was apparently lit last Tuesday, when the Blackhawks agitator took a good razzing from his teammates.

“A lot of guys were giving him a hard time there in the morning. Usually he’s always in a great mood and that morning he was a little more sensitive to our jokes and humor than usual,” Jonathan Toews said with a grin. “He was a little more sensitive that morning but it turned out it worked out great. So I think that’s maybe something we’ll continue trying to do, see if it pays off.”

Whether or not the good-natured ribbing got Shaw going, there’s no doubt the Blackhawks’ shift disturber been a more noticeable player these last three games. He’s helped bring some life to a third line that’s been too quiet this season and was one of the few bright spots in the Blackhawks’ lopsided loss to Nashville on Thursday night.

And it started on Tuesday when Shaw had a goal and an assist, snapping a five-game point-less streak.

[SHOP: Gear up, Blackhawks fans!]

“Yeah, it was one of my best,” Shaw said of that home game against the Predators. “I have to stick to it, get in on the forecheck, get pucks back, sustain pucks, put them in the net and good things will come from that.”

Shaw provided a lift – or tried to – in another way on Thursday, fighting Barret Jackman. Coach Joel Quenneville said following that game that Shaw “was the one guy who left it out there.” Quenneville has liked what he’s seen from Shaw recently.

“It seems like he has the puck more, has more pace to his game. You certainly notice his energy, tenacity,” Quenneville said. “He’s a factor every single shift and that’s where he gets noticed and appreciated.”

The points help, too. Shaw is one of several Blackhawks who have struggled to get many this season but he now has a goal and two assists in his last three games.

[MORE: Power play has been rolling recently for the Blackhawks]

“We can’t expect one line to do everything every night,” Shaw said, referring to the second line of Artemi Panarin, Artem Anisimov and Patrick Kane. “We have to chip in, take the pressure off them a little bit.”

Maybe Shaw’s just finding his niche again; all players go through ebbs and flows throughout a season. But if the team agitating their agitator is what got Shaw going, it may become a game-day habit.

“It’s a team job I guess. We all have to chip in and try and get it done,” Toews said. “We did that the other day and it worked out.”

Instant reaction: Blackhawks squander late lead, fall to Golden Knights in shootout

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USA Today

Instant reaction: Blackhawks squander late lead, fall to Golden Knights in shootout

FINAL SCORE:

Golden Knights 2, Blackhawks 1 (SO)

Snap judgments:

— The Blackhawks played a Golden Knights team that was on the second of a back-to-back and coming off an ugly 6-2 loss in Philadelphia on Monday. They knew the visiting team would come in desperate and it was an even battle, except in the third period when the Golden Knights took control and tied it up at 1-1 with 1:33 left in regulation.

— It took just two games for Kirby Dach to score his first career NHL goal, which will be the first of many. Olli Maatta's pass went off Dach's leg and in, to which Dach said on NBC Sports Chicago during first intermission: "It wasn't the prettiest goal, but I'll take it."

— This was a straight goaltending battle between two of the league's best in Marc-Andre Fleury and Robin Lehner. Fleury was coming off a 29-save shutout against Pittsburgh on Saturday and he followed that up by stopping 31 of 32 shots for a save percentage of .969 against the Blackhawks. Lehner was just as good, if not better, turning aside 33 of 34 shots for a save percentage of .971. He's now 1-0-2 on the season .

Three stars:

1. Golden Knights G Marc-Andre Fleury — Stopped 31 of 32 shots for .969 save percentage

2. Blackhawks C Kirby Dach — First career NHL goal

3. Blackhawks G Robin Lehner — Stopped 33 of 34 shots for .971 save percentage

Must-see highlights:

— Dach's first career NHL goal

— Lehner's desperation save in overtime

What's next:

The Blackhawks host the Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday, Oct. 24 at 7:30 p.m. CT on NBC Sports Chicago.

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Blackhawks make minor league trade with Panthers, acquire defenseman Ian McCoshen

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USA Today

Blackhawks make minor league trade with Panthers, acquire defenseman Ian McCoshen

The Blackhawks have acquired defenseman Ian McCoshen from the Florida Panthers in exchange for forward prospect Aleksi Saarela, the team announced Tuesday. He will report to the Rockford IceHogs of the American Hockey League.

McCoshen is on a one-year contract that runs through the end of the 2019-20 season. His cap hit is $700,000 and he's set to become a restricted free agent.

Originally drafted by the Panthers in the second round (No. 31 overall) of the 2013 NHL Draft, McCoshen has appeared in 60 career NHL games and has seven points (four goals, three assists) and an ice time average of 14:26 per game. He has four assists in seven games with the Springfield Thunderbirds of the AHL this season.

The motive behind the move appears to be giving each player a fresh start elsewhere, although Saarela's time with the Blackhawks was short-lived. He was acquired by the Blackhawks in June, along with Calvin de Haan, for goaltender Anton Forsberg and defenseman Gustav Forsling and had one assist in five games with the Rockford IceHogs.

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.