VANCOUVER, British Columbia The Blackhawks goal against Vancouver was pretty simple: stay disciplined, stay smart and keep the Canucks power play off the ice.
Done, done and done.
Five different Blackhawks scored goals, and the Blackhawks tallied power play goals instead of giving them up in their 5-1 victory over the Canucks at Rogers Arena. It was a pretty dominating performance by the Blackhawks, who after allowing the Canucks five power-play goals 10 days ago, didnt give the Canucks one advantage on Wednesday.
We talked about it in the morning skate. Thats the key against this team, said Marian Hossa, who had three assists. For some reason we got into penalty trouble and it cost us the game at home. Tonight we were more disciplined.
Andrew Brunette and Patrick Kane scored power-play goals, and Jonathan Toews, Patrick Sharp and Steve Montador also scored for the Blackhawks. Corey Crawford was strong again, stopping 28 of 29 shots en route to his ninth victory of the season.
But its what they didnt give up that was just as important as what they produced.
We werent disciplined with the way we played (last time) and tonight that was the focus coming in, Brunette said. Vancouver came at us pretty good early, we hung in there and took the game over.
Yes they did.
The Canucks came out stronger in the first period and by early in the second period the Blackhawks were down 1-0 early in the second period on Jannik Hansens goal. But by the end of the period and thanks to that surging power play, the Blackhawks would have a lead they wouldnt relinquish.
And in a matchup thats usually full of venom and vinegar, this one was pretty quiet. The Blackhawks just hummed along, playing a simple and solid road game to start this lengthy trip.
I think we just played much smarter and, maybe not relaxed, but a patient game, said Toews, who also had an assist. They got a lot of shots from the point, and for the most part when we did get into trouble we were being smart and not making it worse than it was.
The Blackhawks are clicking right now. They needed a smart, disciplined game, not only to start this road trip but especially against this team and in this building. And they got it.
Sometimes when youre in this building you just have to find a way to weather the storm, Toews said. Theyre a fast-moving team. We played smart and just found a way to make it work.
Dave Bolland started on the fourth line Wednesday but was back at his usual checking-line center spot a few shifts into the game. Bolland played a little over 14 minutes, recording three takeaways.
Montador now has three goals in his last two games. Montador was a plus-1 on Wednesday night and is now plus-9 on the season.