Four takeaways: Kirby Dach scores first NHL goal but Blackhawks remain winless against Vegas

Four takeaways: Kirby Dach scores first NHL goal but Blackhawks remain winless against Vegas

Here are four takeaways from the Blackhawks' 2-1 shootout loss to the Vegas Golden Knights at the United Center on Tuesday:

1. Blackhawks remain winless vs. Vegas

The Blackhawks knew the Golden Knights were coming in on the second of back-to-back and would be "pissed off" after getting routed by the Philadelphia Flyers 6-2 on Monday. The Blackhawks wanted to get off to a good start, especially against a team that has the most first-period goals (14) in the league.

The first two periods were even. The third is when the Golden Knights took control and tied it up with 1:33 left in regulation to force overtime. The Blackhawks fell in the shootout and remain winless against the Golden Knights (0-5-2).

"I thought we tightened up a little bit," Duncan Keith said. "I thought the goaltender played good again, that always helps. We were right there and lose in a shootout so it could go either way. Would have been nice to close it out there and take the win in regulation but give them credit, they found a way to tie it up and got in a shootout. Kind of stings that way."

2. Kirby Dach's first career NHL goal

There were a lot of positives to take away from Tuesday's game, and the highlight was Dach getting his first career NHL goal in just his second game. It wasn't pretty, but he'll take it and it's the first of many more to come.

"It was a pretty cool moment," Dach said. "Grew up dreaming of playing in the NHL, and two games in, you've got your first goal. That's pretty special, but at the same time, pretty disappointed that we lost. My main focus is the team game so I've got to take a step back and realize what I can do better to help the team win and move forward tomorrow."

3. Goaltending battle

There were only two goals scored through 65 minutes of action and it's because the sold-out United Center crowd witnessed a terrific goaltending battle between Marc-Andre Fleury and Robin Lehner.

Fleury, a three-time Stanley Cup champion, stopped 31 of 32 shots for a save percentage of .969 while Lehner, a reigning Vezina Trophy finalist, denied 33 of 34 shots for a save percentage of .971. The Blackhawks and Golden Knights each had to work for their regulation goal Fleury came out on top in the shootout.

"They were both good, made a lot of good saves," coach Jeremy Colliton said. "I think it was a pretty tight game, weren't a lot of chances either way. Certainly both guys were good."

4. A quiet, but busy night on special teams 

The Blackhawks lost the special teams battle on Sunday in a 5-3 loss to Washington after going 0-for-5 on the power play and 0-for-1 on the penalty kill, and it turned out to be the primary reason they didn't come away any points. This is a game where the home team couldn't afford to do it again, with the Golden Knights possessing the fifth-best power-play percentage (28.6) and fourth-ranked penalty kill (90.0) going into the matchup.

The Blackhawks went 0-for-4 with the man advantage and are still searching for some consistency in that department. Alex Nylander was promoted to the top unit for Dylan Strome to get a right-handed shot in there to potentially free up Alex DeBrincat's shooting lane, but the team stayed off the scoresheet. 

On the plus side, the Blackhawks killed off all five penalties and allowed only five shots on goal in 8:05 of shorthanded action. That's progress.

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Instant reaction: Blackhawks squander late lead, fall to Golden Knights in shootout

Instant reaction: Blackhawks squander late lead, fall to Golden Knights in shootout

FINAL SCORE:

Golden Knights 2, Blackhawks 1 (SO)

Snap judgments:

— The Blackhawks played a Golden Knights team that was on the second of a back-to-back and coming off an ugly 6-2 loss in Philadelphia on Monday. They knew the visiting team would come in desperate and it was an even battle, except in the third period when the Golden Knights took control and tied it up at 1-1 with 1:33 left in regulation.

— It took just two games for Kirby Dach to score his first career NHL goal, which will be the first of many. Olli Maatta's pass went off Dach's leg and in, to which Dach said on NBC Sports Chicago during first intermission: "It wasn't the prettiest goal, but I'll take it."

— This was a straight goaltending battle between two of the league's best in Marc-Andre Fleury and Robin Lehner. Fleury was coming off a 29-save shutout against Pittsburgh on Saturday and he followed that up by stopping 31 of 32 shots for a save percentage of .969 against the Blackhawks. Lehner was just as good, if not better, turning aside 33 of 34 shots for a save percentage of .971. He's now 1-0-2 on the season .

Three stars:

1. Golden Knights G Marc-Andre Fleury — Stopped 31 of 32 shots for .969 save percentage

2. Blackhawks C Kirby Dach — First career NHL goal

3. Blackhawks G Robin Lehner — Stopped 33 of 34 shots for .971 save percentage

Must-see highlights:

— Dach's first career NHL goal

— Lehner's desperation save in overtime

What's next:

The Blackhawks host the Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday, Oct. 24 at 7:30 p.m. CT on NBC Sports Chicago.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Blackhawks easily on your device.

Blackhawks sign one-year contract with Philip Holm

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USA Today

Blackhawks sign one-year contract with Philip Holm

The Chicago Blackhawks announced Monday they have agreed to terms with Philip Holm on a one-year, two-way contract that runs through the 2019-20 season ($700,000 NHL/$300,000 AHL).

The 27-year-old Swedish defenseman made his NHL debut in 2017 with the Vancouver Canucks against the Vegas Golden Knights. Playing for the Canucks American Hockey League affiliate, the Utica Comets, Holm tallied 29 points (11G, 18A) in 42 regular-season games. Holm was traded to the Golden Knights in 2018. Holm achieved one goal and eight helpers in 21 games with the Chicago Wolves of the AHL. He added two points (1G, 1A) in three Calder Cup Playoff games.  

Before playing in North America, Holm spent the 2015-16 campaign with the Växjö Lakers of the Swedish Hockey League where he scored 21 points (4G, 17A) in 52 regular-season games. He recorded a SHL best plus-24 rating that season. Spanning parts of six seasons (2010-12, 2014-17) with Växjö and Djurgårdens of the SHL, Holm recorded 41 points (10G, 31A) in 197 regular-season games and had one goal and three assists in 26 playoff games. In 90 regular-season Allsvenskan games with Djurgården (2012-14), he had 20 points (6G, 14A). In 2017, Holm helped Sweden to a gold medal at the World Championships of that year, tallying one goal and two assists in seven games.