SAN JOSE, Calif. — Building blocks: The Blackhawks will assemble as many of them as they can as they try to find consistency and, more importantly, victories on this Circus Trip.
Wednesday proved to be a good outing for them, as the Blackhawks rebounded from a disappointing loss in Vancouver for a 5-2 victory over the San Jose Sharks. After warning against the Sharks’ likely hot start, the Blackhawks were the ones who got out to it.
But enough of the lead-in. You are all tired, and you’ll have a house full of relatives on Thursday. So before we start carving into birds, let’s look at Five Things to take from the Blackhawks’ victory over the San Jose Sharks.
1. Kane’s point streak continues. Once again we’re back to the one consistent item the Blackhawks have had in the lineup. Kane said he wanted to play better and not think about the point streak too much from here on out — “if it ends, it ends,” he said. Well, on Wednesday it didn’t end. It continued, as Kane recorded two assists to run his point streak to a career-best 17 games.
2. Andrew Desjardins breaks through. We don’t have to tell you how happy Desjardins was to score his first goal of the season. Just watch the highlights. As much as it was an individual moment, it was also a big help to the Blackhawks. Patrick Marleau had just cut the Blackhawks’ lead to 3-2 about a minute prior, but Desjardins’ goal gave the Blackhawks the momentum back and took the excitement out of the SAP Center. “It looks like (the Sharks) are coming, and that line scores a huge goal for us,” coach Joel Quenneville said. “Very timely.”
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3. Penalty kill bends, doesn’t break. The Blackhawks’ penalty kill has been strong the past few seasons. On Wednesday there were plenty of harrowing moments. Credit the Sharks’ power play, which looked pretty darn good, for some of that. But for all the close calls, the Blackhawks gave up just one power-play goal (by Brent Burns) on the Sharks’ five advantages.
4. Duncan Keith’s latest milestone. Well, he’s moving up the charts on one, anyway. Keith’s goal on Wednesday was the 78th of his career, putting him fourth all-time among Blackhawks defensemen (he passed Pierre Pilote). The Blackhawks are obviously a better team, on both sides of the puck, with Keith back in the lineup. There’s no doubt his offensive contributions, be it scoring or helping to set someone else up, were missed.
5. Happy Thanksgiving! Yes, we’re cheating, going with just Four Things and the shameless holiday cheer item. Seriously, a safe and happy Thanksgiving to you all. May all your turkeys be well cooked and the Bears game tolerable.