On Hockey Fights Cancer night at the United Center, the Blackhawks hosted an emotional pregame ceremony that included Eddie Olczyk helping drop the first puck.
Then the Hawks went about the business of beating the crap out of the Anaheim Ducks.
Patrick Sharp hadn’t scored a goal since Oct. 14, but nine minutes in he got back into the act with his third of the season.
Ryan Hartman and Alex DeBrincat were credited with assists on the Sharp goal, starting what would become the biggest night of DeBrincat’s young career.
At 16:22, DeBrincat snapped home his eighth of the season to extend the lead to two.
Less than two minutes later, Brandon Saad joined the party.
Saad’s ninth of the year put an exclamation mark on a strong opening 20 minutes in which eight different Blackhawks had a point and Chicago held a 16-7 shot advantage.
John Gibson started in net for the Ducks but he wouldn’t survive seven minutes in the second period. He was caught tripping Nick Schmaltz 2:16 into the second and Artem Anisimov made the Ducks pay, scoring his 11th of the year on the power play.
Two minutes after the Anisiomv goal, Jakob Silfverberg ended Corey Crawford’s shutout bid.
Gibson was pulled after allowing four goals against 22 shots in a little more than 26 minutes. Ryan Miller took his place and was under siege almost immediately.
DeBrincat would get that goal back 95 seconds later with his second of the night and ninth of the season.
The kid wasn’t done, though.
Chris Wagner scored 90 seconds after DeBrincat’s second goal of the night to make the score 5-2, but DeBrincat got that goal back, too.
DeBrincat’s first career hat trick was completed on the Hawks’ second power play goal of the night. At the end of 40 minutes, the following Blackhawks had a multi-point night in the books already: DeBrincat, Schmaltz, Hartman, Sharp and Patrick Kane.
Chicago had a 29-15 shot advantage through two periods and were controlling every area of the ice. Late in the second period, the typical Anaheim cheap shots started coming as Miller, Kevin Bieksa and Mike Liambas took liberties without a whistle.
Wagner scored a power play goal 1:33 into the third period to cut the lead to 6-3, but Kane had some more magic in store. He fed Schmaltz with a dirty saucer pass for an easy goal to make the score 7-3 in favor of the Hawks.
Connor Murphy picked up an assist on the Schmaltz goal, making him the 12th Blackhawks skater to pick up a point in the game.
The final 14:12 came and went without another goal, and the Blackhawks “hung on” to win 7-3.
DeBrincat became the second-youngest player in Blackhawks history to score a hat trick, missing Jeremy Roenick’s record by only four days. He led the way with four points for Chicago and was also credited with a team-leading five shots on net in 15 minutes of ice time.
Kane had three assists, three shots on goal, two blocked shots and two takeaways.
Schmaltz had one goal and two assists, three shots on goal and one takeaway.
Sharp had two points and three shots on net.
Hartman had two assists, two hits and was plus-three. He also won seven of 12 at the dot.
Jonathan Toews didn’t register a point but won 12 of 19 faceoffs.
Tommy Wingels led Chicago with five hits. Duncan Keith had a team-leading four takeaways. And Gustav Forsling had a team-high three blocked shots.
Crawford made 25 saves.
The Hawks are back on the ice on Tuesday night in Nashville.