Corey Crawford stops 42 shots as Blackhawks top Wild

Corey Crawford stops 42 shots as Blackhawks top Wild

Corey Crawford has had his good and not-so-good outings the last couple of weeks. On Sunday, he was at his best.

Crawford stopped a season high 42 shots and Trevor van Riemsdyk's second-period goal proved to be the game winner as the Blackhawks beat the Minnesota Wild 4-2 on Sunday afternoon. The Blackhawks snapped a two-game losing streak and are now one point behind the Wild, whom they've beaten in the last three games, in the Western Conference.

Patrick Kane had a goal (his 30th of the season) and an assist), as did Artemi Panarin.

If you didn't see Sunday's game the score would be a bit misleading. The Blackhawks did a lot with a little, getting those four goals on 22 shots. Credit their offense for an incredibly fast start. Kane scored just 51 seconds into the game and Panarin's 22nd goal of the season a few minutes later gave the Blackhawks a 2-0 lead at 4:38. More surprising is Wild coach Bruce Boudreau pulled Devan Dubnyk after that second goal (the Blackhawks had just two shots at that point). Boudreau told the media following the game that he didn't think Dubnyk was following the puck well.

Boudreau may not have meant to spark the Wild but it looked like he did. From that point on the Wild were relentless, firing 44 shots, many of good quality, on Crawford. Sharp from the start, Crawford kept the Blackhawks from losing their lead.

"I think that was a big game for us," Crawford said. "After two losses, coming back against one of the best teams in the league, some big points for us there."

Coach Joel Quenneville said Crawford was, "terrific."

"Fortunate start there, couple of quick goals. We slowed down as the game progressed there and Crow made some great saves, big saves," Quenneville said. "The second period, we were fortunate to come ahead there."

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Indeed, the Wild had 20 of their 44 shots in that second period and came up with nothing thanks to Crawford. Meanwhile a Wild gaffe gave the Blackhawks, up 2-1 to start the second, a 3-1 lead by the end of it. Ryan White was going to be called for a tripping penalty on Jordin Tootoo. White stopped playing but the whistle hadn't blown, Marcus Kruger grabbed the puck and passed to van Riemsdyk, who gave the Blackhawks a 3-1 lead.

"I was the beneficiary of two great plays, Toots taking the guy with him and Krugs coming up and laying it to me on the back door," said van Riemsdyk, who also scored against Detroit on Friday. "It would've been pretty hard to miss that so I just wanted to guide it in. Didn't want to mess it up."

Marian Hossa scored his 22nd of the season, a breakaway spurred by a Duncan Keith pass, late in the third period.

The Blackhawks overall did not play their best game of the season. They took advantage of a good goaltender having a tough start. They took advantage of a mistake in the second period. And they rode Crawford, who saved his best of the season for one of the biggest games of the season.

"Huge game by Crow tonight, but I think overall we want to be better as a team and I think we have 14 games left to make sure that happens and feel good about ourselves going into the playoffs," Kane said. "We'll see what happens now. I know they've got a game in hand on us, but we're right there. So, we'll see."

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Potential problems in the NHL bubble?


SportsTalk Live Podcast: Potential problems in the NHL bubble?

Gordon Wittenmyer, Scott King and Nick Shepkowski join Kap on a Thursday edition of STL.

0:00 - MLB teams continue their preparations for the 2020 season. So, is there hope that the league has finally gotten past its testing issues?

4:00 - A hospital in Edmonton had to close its doors because of a COVID-19 outbreak. That city is expected to host one of the NHL’s bubbles. Should the league be concerned?

8:30 - Yahoo! Sports columnist Dan Wetzel joins Kap. Will we have major college football in the fall? And will the NFL be able to play through the pandemic?

19:30 - The panel weighs in on the possibility of major college football this fall.

Listen here or below.

Sports Talk Live Podcast



Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook practices for first time since surgeries

Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook practices for first time since surgeries

On Thursday, Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook joined the team for voluntary small-group workouts — under the NHL's Return To Play plan guidelines — at Fifth Third Arena.

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Nice to Seabs ya back on the ice Brent 👀

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The Hawks are scheduled to begin their training camp for the league's 24-team playoffs at Fifth Third, their practice facility, on Monday before taking on the Oilers in Edmonton beginning Aug. 1 in a best-of-five play-in series.

Related: If Seabrook returns, where does he fit in Blackhawks' postseason lineup?

The three-time Stanley Cup champion had surgeries on his right shoulder in December, left hip in January and right hip February. Thursday marked his first practice with the team since the surgeries.

On Saturday, The Athletic reported the blueliner wanted to suit up for this year's camp and postseason. 

Seabrook last played December 15 in a 5-3 win over the Minnesota Wild.

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