On Sunday night the Blackhawks went into Pittsburgh and ended the Penguins’ eight-game win streak.
They then flew home and hosted the Calgary Flames on Monday. Calgary came in with 56 points, tied with Vegas for the top spot in the Western Conference.
Two of the better scoring forwards in the league were supposed to put on a show. Johnny Gaudreau came in with 24 goals, tied for eighth in the NHL. Patrick Kane, who has been absolutely on fire of late, came in with 23.
So of course Gaudreau started the scoring for the Flames at 3:24 into the first period, his 25th of the year.
Never one to miss an opportunity, Kane answered with a ridiculous goal – his 24th of the season.
Kane looked into the seats immediately after scoring. His parents were seated right there. Because of course.
Chicago was out-shot 16-12 in the first period but took a 1-1 tie to the dressing room. Collin Delia was good and the Hawks came back for the second looking to take a lead – and slow down the Flames’ offense.
Five minutes into the second period Kane took center stage again. He split the defense and set up Alex DeBrincat, who fired home his 20th of the year to give Chicago a 2-1 lead.
Marcus Kruger had a golden chance but opted to try one pass too many instead of taking a shot. And Brandon Saad had a couple really good opportunities in the second but couldn’t find a handle on the puck.
That lead lasted until the Blackhawks found themselves short-handed for a third time in the period late. With Erik Gustafsson in the box, Sean Monahan tied the game on his 23rd of the season.
The Hawks out-shot the Flames 12-9 in the second period in spite of being short-handed three times.
Early in the third, Gaudreau put home his second of the night to give the Flames a 3-2 lead. The goal came 54 seconds into the third.
With 13 minutes left in regulation Gaudreau and Monahan had a 2-on-1 but Delia made an enormous save.
Chicago needed a break as Calgary’s speed was too much for a lot of the third and they got it with 2:22 left in the third when Mikael Backlund took a penalty.
Delia went to the bench with 63 seconds remaining and Calgary scored almost immediately. Garnet Hathaway scored his fifth of the year into the empty cage to extend the lead to two. It was credited as a short-handed empty-net goal.
But the Hawks didn’t let that end the night. Saad scored with 25 seconds left in regulation, his 12th of the season.
Calgary iced the puck with 3.4 seconds on the clock and the Hawks net empty. But Monahan tied up Jonathan Toews on the faceoff and the clock expired.
With his goal and assist on Monday night, Kane has nine goals and 10 assists in his last 11 games.
Over that same stretch, DeBrincat has a point in eight of his last 11 games.
Toews won 15 of 27 at the dot but his personal six-game point streak came to a close.
Delia stopped 39 of 42 in the loss.
Chris Kunitz skated 5:40 with two giveaways.