Calgary Flames

Four takeaways: Blackhawks lose Duncan Keith to ejection, drop fifth straight to Flames

Four takeaways: Blackhawks lose Duncan Keith to ejection, drop fifth straight to Flames

Here are four takeaways from the Blackhawks' 5-3 loss to the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome on Saturday:

1. Duncan Keith ejection

The Blackhawks were dealt a major blow in the first period when their two-time Norris Trophy winner was thrown out of the game 2:14 into it for boarding Dillon Dube, who exited and did not return.

It was an unfortunate result but certainly did not appear to be intentional or vicious as Keith immediately checked on the rookie forward as soon as it happened. Dube also made a quick turn, putting him in a vulnerable position and giving Keith no time to react.

The Flames scored once on the five-minute power play and the Blackhawks dodged a bullet by playing the next 1:47 shorthanded after forgetting to put a player in the penalty box following Keith's ejection.

2. Flames flurry in third

The Flames overcame a 4-1 deficit on Thursday against the Colorado Avalanche and won in regulation 6-5. They did it again on Saturday, this time overcoming a two-goal deficit and winning in regulation 5-3.

The Blackhawks surrendered four unanswered goals, three of which came in the third period — one of them an empty-netter. The Flames upped their third-period goal total to 28 on the season, which is far and away the most out of any team in the NHL.

It also didn't help that the Blackhawks were outshot 20-4 in the final frame, and were essentially trying to survive without Keith. Corey Crawford did all he could, finishing with 36 saves on 40 shots for a .900 save percentage.

3. Jonathan Toews hits 300

It would have been better in a win, but the Blackhawks captain reached a memorable milestone in his hockey career.

Toews scored a power-play goal 13:57 into the first period and became the sixth player in Blackhawks history and 16th active NHL player to hit the 300-goal mark. He has three goals in his past five games after going goalless in his previous six games.

Toews has scored at least 20 goals in each of his first 11 NHL seasons. He has eight through 15 games this season.

4. Brent Seabrook's gutsy effort

The minute Keith got ejected, you knew it was going to be a long night for the Blackhawks' five defensemen. It was for the 14-year veteran Seabrook.

He logged a season-high 26:48 of ice time, had an assist, a game-high four blocked shots, two shot attempts (one on goal), one takeaway and also made a third-period save on Elias Lindholm to keep it a one-goal game.

It's a good thing the Blackhawks have a four-day break, giving Seabrook a much-needed few days of rest. It also gives the entire team a chance to reset and regroup after going winless on their road trip.

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Two crucial challenges go against Blackhawks in loss to Flames

Two crucial challenges go against Blackhawks in loss to Flames

The NHL replay system didn’t do the Blackhawks – who need every point they can get – any favors on Tuesday night.

Two crucial, potential game-changing challenges went against the home team in a 3-2 loss to the Calgary Flames at the United Center.

Let’s break it down.

Challenge No. 1: Early in the second period, Ryan Hartman scored a wacky goal to give the Blackhawks a 2-1 lead. After a lengthy review to determine if Hartman kicked the puck in the net – which was confirmed he did not – the Flames challenged for goaltender interference. After another lengthy review, the call was reversed, with refs saying Hartman indeed interfered with Mike Smith.

According to the NHL, "The Referee determined that Hartman prevented Smith from doing his job in his crease."

Hartman disagreed.

“The puck's right there in my body and I'm just standing there and I get pulled over and the puck goes in the net,” Hartman said of the play after the game. “I didn't lunge at the goalie, I didn't go into the goalie. I fell backwards, so I don't know.”

Joel Quennville’s face says it all.

Challenge No. 2: With 3:30 left in the third period, Johnny Gaudreau appeared to have deflected a shot by Michael Stone to give the Flames a 2-1 lead. Immediately, Blackhawks goalie Jeff Glass put his hands up in the air, believing Gaudreau’s stick was above the crossbar when the puck was redirected. The Blackhawks challenged, but quickly lost.

The Flames would eventually go on to score an empty-netter, and Patrick Kane scored with about six seconds left. Game over. Blackhawks lose 3-2.

“We’ll take tonight to think about it, and we’ll move on,” Hartman said.

On Postgame Live, Jamal Mayers and Adam Burish had some tell-it-like-it-is stuff:

Three Things to Watch: Blackhawks seek revenge against Flames

NBC Sports Chicago

Three Things to Watch: Blackhawks seek revenge against Flames

Here are Three Things to Watch when the Blackhawks take on the Calgary Flames tonight on NBC Sports Chicago and streaming live on the NBC Sports app. Coverage begins at 6:30 p.m. with Blackhawks Pregame Live.

1. Take 2: Finish the deal.

The Blackhawks jumped out to a 2-0 lead in Saturday's matchup against the Flames but failed to seal the deal and lost 4-3 in overtime. It was a crushing defeat after it appeared the Blackhawks would take two points and prevent them from getting two, but instead it went the other way and they picked up only one.

Starts haven't been a problem as of late for the Blackhawks, it's the finishes that have been. This has to be one of the nights where they finish strong.

2. Third time's the charm?

Jeff Glass has gotten two starts in his hometown of Calgary this season but lost in overtime in each of them despite a pair of 35-save performances. Perhaps the Blackhawks can help him get the win against the Flames on his third try, this time at home.

He'll have to overcome some unlucky results at home, though. He's 1-3-1 with a 3.25 goals against average and .905 save percentage in six appearances at the United Center this season compared to 2-0-2 with a 3.22 goals against average and .912. save percentage on the road.

3. Home ice disadvantage?

Speaking of home struggles, the Blackhawks had a six-game homestand prior to their four-game road trip but didn't have much success during it. They went 1-4-1 and had a minus-11 goal differential over that stretch.

It's weird to see the Blackhawks have a hard time at home, a place they've been so good at for really the last decade. Last year they were 26-10-5 at home. This year they're already at 12-10-3.