Blackhawks

Patrick Kane extends point streak as Blackhawks blank Jets

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Patrick Kane extends point streak as Blackhawks blank Jets

The Blackhawks couldn’t have played much worse than they did on Thursday night. They certainly couldn’t have started worse.

So with that lousy game in mind they did an about-face in just about every category on Friday, including that start.

Patrick Kane scored to extend his point streak to 25 games and Jonathan Toews added a power-play goal as the Blackhawks beat the Winnipeg Jets 2-0 on Friday night. The Blackhawks rebounded from Thursday with a complete effort; their power play supplied two goals, their penalty kill shutting the Jets down, they blocked 23 shots and Corey Crawford stopped all 25 shots he saw.

“That really wasn’t our team at all,” Crawford said of Thursday’s game. “Usually you bounce back after games like that and tonight was really good. The power play was rolling and our PK was solid. It was a good game for us.

[MORE: Patrick Kane ties post-lockout record with 25-game point streak]

And it was another good night for Kane, whose power-play goal ties him with Sidney Crosby for the longest point streak since the 1992-93 season. Crosby’s 25-game point streak was from Nov. 5-Dec. 28, 2010.

“I think it's one of those things when you realize what elite company you're in, when you're with these great players that have had these great streaks, it definitely humbles you,” Kane said. “I obviously feel honored and very fortunate to be involved with names like those. It's something I'm trying not to think about too much. I just go out and play the game. The last few games, I don't think I've played as well as I probably could've, but sometimes you end up with those chances and you can take advantage of getting points.”

Trevor Daley returned after missing the last two games with a neck injury sustained on Sunday against the Jets. He played just under nine minutes and was paired with David Rundblad, who had the secondary assist on Kane’s goal.

Toews gave the Blackhawks a 1-0 lead just 4:34 into the game. He, Marian Hossa and Andrew Shaw were all around the net and each got a whack at Rundblad’s shot from the blue line.

Midway through the second period Kane added to his point streak, scoring off a no-look pass from Teuvo Teravainen with 12 seconds remaining on the power play for a 2-0 lead.

“Great goal, what a play, what a shot. It continues on so it’s been fun to be a part of it, fun watching him continue to find different ways,” coach Joel Quenneville said. “He has some different looks every single night and if you’re an opponent it’s tough to contain.”

[NBC SHOP: Gear up, Blackhawks fans!]

Crawford wasn’t as busy as Tuesday, when he stopped 36 of 37 shots against the Nashville Predators. But the Jets looked their best in the third, when Crawford stopped all 13 of their shots.

“I mean, they had some zone time in the second; they just didn’t get many shots on it. Our guys did a great job of keeping them to the outside and blocking shots,” Crawford said. “They had some momentum in the third but we played well throughout the whole game. That was a good comeback win after last night.”

It certainly erased the lousy feeling from Thursday night. The Blackhawks figured they had a rebound game in them. They got the necessary performance from everyone on Friday.

“I think even not having played so well early in [Thursday’s] game, Kaner scores that goal to make it 3-1, they were just really on their game and made sure they took the momentum back. They were feeling it,” Toews said. “But we knew tonight was going to be a different story. We could bring that energy and momentum early on and you saw what happened.”

Getting to know four newly-signed Blackhawks

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AP

Getting to know four newly-signed Blackhawks

The Blackhawks announced Monday that they have officially agreed to terms with forward Dominik Kahun, defensemen Lucas Carlsson and Darren Raddysh and goaltender Kevin Lankinen on entry-level contracts.

Kahun ($925,000 cap hit), Lankinen ($925,000) and Raddysh ($730,000) each signed two-year deals that run through the 2019-20 season while Carlsson's is a three-year deal that runs through the 2020-21 campaign and carries a cap hit of $792,500.

So who are these guys? Let's meet them:

Carlsson

Drafted in the fourth round (No. 110 overall) by the Blackhawks in 2016, Carlsson set a career-high with 17 points (seven goals, 10 assists) in 44 games this season with Brynäs IF of the Swedish Hockey League. He was tied for fourth among all blue liners with seven goals.

Carlsson, 20, doesn't have major upside, but he's a reliable, well-rounded defenseman and that's what drew the attention of Blackhawks vice president of amateur scouting Mark Kelley.

“When he’s on the ice, he makes things happen," Kelley told Scott Powers of The Athletic last summer. "I think what impressed the Sweden under-20 coach was Lucas’ ability to challenge in all three zones. He’s an active defensively. Offensively, he challenges. He keeps plays alive.”

Kahun

The 22-year-old forward spent the last four seasons with EHC München of the Deutsche Eishockey Liga, Germany's top professional hockey league, where he established career highs in assists (29), points (41) and tied a personal best with 12 goals, leading Munchen to their third straight championship in 2018 after recording four goals and 10 assists in 17 playoff contests.

He raised eyebrows at the 2018 Olympics in Pyeongchang, where he compiled five points (two goals, three assists) in seven games and won 55.4 percent of his faceoffs (41 of 74), helping Germany capture a silver medal.

“He has made an enormous step this year, has become much more stable and mature," German national team coach Marco Sturm said after the Olympics. "I am sure that he would grab it in the NHL,” Sturm told the Hamburger Morgenpost.

Most recently, Kahun had a goal and two assists in seven games for Germany during the IIHF Men's World Championship. He's 5-foot-11, 176 pounds whose known to be a solid two-way player and can play center but may need some time to adjust to the smaller ice surface and NHL style of speed and physicality.

Lankinen 

Lankinen is 23 years old and coming off a season in which he was in the discussion for the Urpo Ylönen trophy, annually awarded to the top goaltender of the Finnish Elite League, after registering a league-best 1.33 goals against average and .946 save percentage in 15 games with HIFK.

He missed a large portion of the season because of an injury, but it didn't stop him from turning in a strong postseason, guiding his team to a bronze medal after posting a 1.99 GAA and .936 save percentage in 13 playoff games. The year before that, he led the league with seven shutouts in 42 games, backstopping his team to a silver medal.

This is a low-risk, medium-sized reward signing for the Blackhawks, who could use some more young goaltending depth in the pipeline, especially given how this season unfolded with the big club.

Raddysh

The Blackhawks signed Raddysh to a one-year AHL contract last June, and he turned it into an NHL one after a strong season with the Rockford IceHogs.

Raddysh, 22, accumulated 22 points (five goals, 17 assists) in 66 regular-season games with the IceHogs, and has appeared in each of the team's playoff games en route to the Western Conference Final.

Last season Raddysh was named the OHL's top defenseman after scoring 16 goals and 65 assists for 81 points in 62 games for the Erie Otters, where he was teammates with current Blackhawks winger Alex DeBrincat. He's the Otters' all-time leader in assists (143) and points (184) among defensemen.

Raddysh might be nothing more than a depth defenseman, but his development is worth monitoring because the offensive production is there and that's something the Blackhawks lacked this past season from their back end.

Blackhawks winger Marian Hossa: 'I will not play hockey anymore'

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AP

Blackhawks winger Marian Hossa: 'I will not play hockey anymore'

Days after putting his Gold Coast condo on the market, Blackhawks winger Marian Hossa revealed to a Slovakian newspaper that he is moving back to his hometown country and doesn't plan on returning to the NHL.

"I will not play hockey anymore," said Hossa, who missed the entire 2017-18 campaign due to a progressive skin disorder and the side effects of the medications involved to treat it. "I have a valid contract with Chicago for the next three years, but I have only one health and it does not allow me to return."

Because he has three years left on a deal that carries a $5.275 million cap hit, Hossa is not expected to sign his retirement papers until the contract is completed or else it would result in salary cap consequences.

The news is not surprising, but it officially allows the Blackhawks to move on without him in the fold roster-wise and toy around with some options this summer.

The first is stashing his contract on long-term injured reserve, as they did last season when they utilized the in-season preference.

The second, which Hossa wondered could happen, is finding a trade partner that would absorb the remainder of his contract, usually done by lower payroll teams aiming to reach the cap floor.

And it wouldn't be difficult trying to find a buyer, considering Hossa's actual salary is $1 million per year over the next three seasons. Hossa, of course, has a no movement clause but it's likely he would waive it given his status at this point.

The good news for Chicago is, the three-time Stanley Cup winner didn't rule out joining the Blackhawks organization in some capacity after his contract expires in 2020-21, whether it's in a front office role or as a team ambassador.

In 19 NHL seasons, Hossa accumulated 525 goals and 609 assists for 1,134 points in 1,309 regular-season games, and added 149 points (52 goals, 97 assists) in 205 postseason contests. He's one of 45 players in league history to net at least 500 goals in his career.