On paper, it shouldn’t have been a close game.
In reality, it wasn’t.
The Blackhawks dropped the hammer on the Blue Jackets in the first period and didn’t let them get close the rest of the way, as Chicago got two points closer to a playoff spot.
Points were awarded like Halloween candy in Columbus on Tuesday night. Duncan Keith had four assists, Patrick Sharp has two goals, Marian Hossa had a goal and an assist and Andrew Shaw had his second straight multi-point night as the Hawks scored early and ran away from the Jackets. It was the first four-assist night in Keith’s career.
The Hawks’ five goals came from Sharp (two), Hossa, Shaw and Brent Seabrook. Bryan Bickell, Dave Bolland, Marcus Kruger and Viktor Stalberg each had an assist in the game as well. Chicago scored on both of their power play opportunities.
Unfortunately, there was cause for concern in the third period when Nick Leddy was boarded at 3:23 by Darryl Boyce. Leddy took one shift after the hit and left the bench early. It’s too bad he’ll feel hungover the morning after his 21st birthday and won’t have a legitimate reason for it.
Corey Crawford couldn’t hold on to what would have been the first shutout of the season, but did make 24 saves against 25 shots on the night. He has now allowed four goals against 93 shots (a .957 save percentage) in his four appearances since taking over for Ray Emery after the first period against St. Louis.
The Hawks swept the season series from Columbus, which marked the first time since 1971-72 that the Hawks had swept a season series (St. Louis).
Chicago now travels home to face the Canucks at the United Center at 7:00 pm CT on Wednesday night.