The last two Blackhawks losses have been among the worst in the last decade. Chicago allowed 100 shots on net in 125 minutes of hockey and looked lifeless. The only positives were the play on special teams and the addition of Adam Boqvist to the NHL lineup.
So the Hawks heading into Anaheim on Sunday night after an ugly overtime loss against the Kings stacked up as a potential problem. The Ducks were celebrating the 1,000th career regular season game in the great career of Ryan Getzlaf (which came Sunday night) and Chicago was playing badly. Coach Jeremy Colliton made two lineup changes for the game, bringing Erik Gustafsson and Drake Cagguila back into the game with Zack Smith and Dennis Gilbert taking a seat.
And, for the first time this year, Colliton started a game with Patrick Kane, Dylan Strome and Alex DeBrincat together.
Gustafsson made his presence felt early with a penalty 5:16 into the game. Chicago killed that penalty off and immediately went to the power play when Josh Mahura tripped Ryan Carpenter.
Chicago’s power play did not score but just as it expired Adam Boqvist found the back of the net for the first time in his NHL career.
— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) November 4, 2019
Alex Nylander, 21, set up Boqvist, 19, for the goal.
Six minutes later a couple names we’re more accustomed to gave the Hawks a two-goal lead. While Chicago was on a two-man advantage, Kane threaded the needle to set up Debrincat.
DeBrincat, 21, scored his fourth of the season.
So, in review, goals were scored by skaters who are 19 and 21 and one of the primary assists went to a 21-year-old.
Chicago out-shot Anaheim 15-11 in the first period, a nice change of pace. The Hawks were seconds away from scoring two power play goals and successfully killed the Ducks’ only power play.
At 12:39 into the second Sam Steel got tangled up with Olli Maatta in front of Robin Lehner and an Erik Gudbranson shot appeared to bounce off Maatta. Steel was credited with the goal, however, and Anaheim saw some offensive momentum off the goal.
When the second period ended Chicago had a 27-25 shot advantage and a 2-1 lead on the scoreboard.
Chicago got another advantage 85 seconds into the third period. The back half of the penalty was erased when Jonathan Toews was sent to the box for slashing. Chicago killed the Ducks penalty, giving the Blackhawks 15 consecutive successful penalties killed – something we couldn’t have imagined being possible last year.
Less than 60 seconds after he left the box Toews was whistled for slashing a second time in the period.
This time Steel was in the right spot again – but to be the assist man. He found Nick Ritchie on the back side wide open and the game was tied. Chicago’s penalty kill streak ended as well.
After a couple rough calls in a row on Toews that resulted in a tying goal, Chicago got the next power play when Carter Rowney tripped Andrew Shaw. Chicago failed to convert on their power play, however. Andrew Miller made a tremendous save to keep the game tied.
For the second consecutive night 60 minutes wasn’t enough and we got overtime. Chicago was out-shot 13-9 in the third period.
After he led Chicago with more than 29 minutes of ice time on Saturday night, Duncan Keith was over 23 minutes and led the Hawks again at the end of regulation.
It took only 24 seconds into overtime for the Blackhawks to earn Robin Lehner his 100th career regular season victory. Toews got the puck and patiently circled to Ryan Miller’s left, eventually hitting Kane with a perfect pass that was deposited cleanly for the game-winner.
Lehner was outstanding, stopping 36 of 38 in the win.
Toews skated 20:28 with two assists and won 13 of 24 faceoffs in the game.
Nylander led the Blackhawks with seven shots on net in 16:33.
Kane had one goal and one assist with three shots on net in 19:44.
Patrick Kane's OT game winning goal gives him 950 career points – and sole possession of 100th place on the NHL all-time career points list. #Blackhawks
— Christopher Kamka (@ckamka) November 4, 2019
Boqvist skated 15:44 in regulation and had three shots on net. His 3:40 on the power play in regulation was second behind only Keith (4:20) on the blue line.
Kirby Dach, who was limited against the Kings, skated 12:37 in regulation against the Ducks. Was was credited with one shot on net and spent 3:47 on the power play.