Blackhawks

Patrick Kane extends point streak as Blackhawks blank Jets

kane-blackhawks-jets-12-11-15.png

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.”

Four takeaways: Blackhawks on wrong side of history in loss to Lightning

cam_ward_ap.jpg
AP

Four takeaways: Blackhawks on wrong side of history in loss to Lightning

Here are four takeaways from the Blackhawks' 6-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning at the United Center on Sunday:

1. Blackhawks on wrong side of history 

Earlier this year the Blackhawks made history by appearing in five straight overtime games to start the season, something no team in NBA, NFL, NHL or MLB history has ever done.

But Sunday they found themselves on the wrong side of it after allowing 33 shots on goal in the second period alone. It tied a franchise high for most given up in a single period — March 4, 1941 vs. Boston — and is the most an NHL team has allowed since 1997-98 when shots by period became an official stat.

"It's pretty rare to be seeing that much work in a period," said Cam Ward, who had a season-high 49 saves. "But oh man, I don't even know what to say to be honest. It's tough. We know that we need to be better especially in our home building, too. And play with some pride and passion. Unfortunately, it seemed like it was lacking at times tonight. The old cliche you lose as a team and overall as a team we weren't good enough tonight."

Said coach Joel Quenneville: "That was a tough, tough period in all aspects. I don’t think we touched the puck at all and that was the part that was disturbing, against a good hockey team."

2. Alexandre Fortin is on the board

After thinking he scored his first career NHL goal in Columbus only to realize his shot went off Marcus Kruger's shin-pad, Fortin made up for it one night later and knows there wasn't any question about this one.

The 21-year-old undrafted forward, playing in his his fifth career game, sprung loose for a breakaway early in the first period and received a terrific stretch pass by Jan Rutta from his own goal line to Fortin, who slid it underneath Louis Domingue for his first in the big leagues. It's his second straight game appearing on the scoresheet after recording an assist against the Blue Jackets on Saturday.

"It's fun," Fortin said. "I think it would be a little bit more fun to get your first goal [while getting] two points for your team, but I think we ... just have to [turn the page to the] next chapter and just play and be ready for next game."

3. Brandon Saad's most noticeable game?

There weren't many positives to take away from this game, but Saad was certainly one of them. He had arguably his best game of the season, recording seven shot attempts (three on goal) with two of them hitting the post (one while the Blackhawks were shorthanded).

He was on the ice for 11 shot attempts for and five against at 5-on-5, which was by far the best on his team.

"He started OK and got way better," Quenneville said of Saad. "Had the puck way more, took it to the net a couple of times, shorthanded."

4. Special teams still a work in progress

The Blackhawks entered Sunday with the 29th-ranked power play and 25th-ranked penalty kill, and are still working to get out from the bottom of the league in both departments. In an effort to change up their fortunes with the man advantage, the Blackhawks split up their two units for more balance.

They had four power-play opportunities against Tampa Bay and cashed in on one of them, but it didn't matter as it was too little, too late in the third period — although they did become the first team to score a power-play goal against the Lightning this season (29 chances).

"Whether we're looking for balance or we're just looking for one to get hot, I think our power play has been ordinary so far," Quenneville said before the game. "We need it to be more of a threat."

Four more minor penalties were committed by the Blackhawks, giving them eight in the past two games. That's one way they can shore up the penalty kill, by cutting back on taking them.

Blackhawks tie franchise record for shots on goal allowed in one period

hawks_bad_record.jpg
USA TODAY

Blackhawks tie franchise record for shots on goal allowed in one period

Well, things could be going better for the Blackhawks during Sunday's game against the Lightning.

In the second period Sunday, the Blackhawks surrendered 33 shots on goal, tying a franchise record for most in a single period. The previous instance occurred March 4, 1941 against the Boston Bruins, a game that the Blackhawks lost 3-2.

While the Blackhawks tied a franchise record for shots on goal allowed, they actually set an NHL record at the same time. The NHL did not begin recording shots on goal as an "official" statistic until the 1997-98 season.

Consequentially, Sunday's 33 shots on goal allowed in the second period is the "official" record, even though the Blackhawks accomplished the "feat" nearly 80 years ago. Confusing, huh? 

Unfortunately for the Blackhawks, they also surrendered three goals and scored zero in addition to the plethora of shots on goal allowed. They recorded just six shots on goal in the second period themselves, trailing 4-1 by the time the third period started.