Fleury, Blackhawks Escape Washington With Shootout Win

The Blackhawks went to Washington on Thursday night with a fresh face — Josiah Slavin — making his NHL debut.

One area of the game worth watching was the faceoff circle. The Blackhawks entered the game ranked 22nd overall in the NHL as a team (48.1 percent). Washington came into the game ranked 29th out of 32 teams, winning just 46.9 percent of their faceoffs.

We note one significant caveat in those numbers: Jonathan Toews had taken 38.7 percent of the Blackhawks’ total team faceoffs this season, winning 57.5 percent of his personal draws. The rest of the Blackhawks around him were winning only 42.1 percent of their faceoffs — which is awful.

The opening 20 minutes were about even for most of the period. With a stoppage with about 90 seconds left in the period for a neutral zone faceoff, Hawks coach Derek King sent Kirby Dach over the boards with Alex DeBrincat to join Patrick Kane, who was getting a doubleshift (surprise!) opportunity. That mix paid off Seth Jones triggered a 2-on-1 for Kane and DeBrincat that ended with DeBrincat’s 13th goal of the season.

Kane and Jones were credited with the assists at exactly 19 minutes into the game.

Marc-André Fleury stopped all eight shots he faced in the first period and the Blackhawks put nine on net, including DeBrincat’s goal to take a 1-0 lead to the room.

That lead lasted only 70 seconds into the second period. Alex Ovechkin set the tone of the start of the second with a huge hit on Connor Murphy 22 seconds into the period. Murphy didn’t return to the ice in the period and was done for the night.

Nic Dowd tied the game at 1:10 into the second, and Washington had the momentum.

Washington was credited with the first eight shots of the second period but Fleury was able to hang on for dear life and keep the game tied. Chicago hung around long enough that they just needed a good look and finally got one almost 13 minutes into the period. We had a celebrity guest appearance from Dominik Kubalik!

The assists on Kubalik’s goal went to Dach and DeBrincat.

Chicago’s lead lasted almost five minutes this time. Ovechkin unloaded on a shot that Fleury somehow stopped but Evgeny Kuznetsov was able to tap it home to even the game at two.

When the dust settled after two periods, the score was tied at two. After Chicago out-shot Washington 9-8 in the first period, the Caps held a 9-8 shot advantage in the second. So everything on the board was tied after 40 minutes of hockey.

How were the Blackhawks doing in the faceoff circle after two periods? As a team, Chicago was winning 59 percent. Toews won 11 of 14 in the first two periods; Chicago was dominating the faceoff circle even though Henrik Borgstrom had won only two of nine. Even Dach was over 50 percent (four wins in seven chances).

With Murphy out of the lineup, Seth Jones skated 9:20… in the second period. He was at 17:30 after two periods and Jake McCabe was already up to 16:46 with Caleb Jones and Wyatt Kalynuk in the lineup.

The Blackhawks started the third period with 50 seconds of power play time as Garnet Hathaway went to the box for elbowing Erik Gustafsson late in the second. Unfortunately for the Blackhawks, a turnover as Hathaway left the box turned into an easy breakaway with Dowd finding Hathaway, who scored to give the Caps a 3-2 lead 57 seconds into the third.

With a shade over eight minutes left in regulation, Slavin set up Seth Jones for a missile to tie the game at three.

Slavin’s first career assist was collected from the back of the net by Erik Gustafsson as a trophy for the young forward from his NHL debut.

After the goal the game was a sloppy track meet. The teams skated up and down with bodies flying all over the ice, pucks missing the net, ugly saves and passes going anywhere but the tape. Fleury was all over the place trying to keep the game tied, which he successfully did for the remainder of regulation.

Chicago out-shot Washington 26-25 in regulation. Each side scored three times. And we headed to overtime with Seth Jones at 27 minutes of ice time.

In regulation, Toews won 13 of 17 at the dot; Borgstrom, on the other hand, won two of 13.

Jones had a chance to win it early in overtime on the shooting end of a 2-on-1 with DeBrincat but his shot was deflected into the netting.

Washington hit the post three times and Fleury made a few good saves to keep the game moving and DeBrincat appeared to get hooked on by Tom Wilson on an opportunity with 33 seconds left in OT but there was no call. King sent Jones, Kane and DeBrincat over the boards for an offensive zone faceoff with 33 seconds left and DeBrincat lost the faceoff.

Neither side got a shot on net in the closing half minute and we went to a skills competition. Fleury stopped 25 of 28 in 65 minutes of hockey. His teammates also put 28 shots on net.

Appropriately, Evgeny Kuznetsov hit the post to start the shootout. Toews was denied on his shot attempt.

Appropriately, Daniel Sprong his the post in Washington’s second shootout attempt. Kane scored.

Ovechkin was up third for Washington. Fleury denied his long-time rival and the Blackhawks escaped with their first win in Washington DC since January of 2006.

35 thoughts on “Fleury, Blackhawks Escape Washington With Shootout Win

  • December 2, 2021 at 8:58 pm

    Nice win in an entertaining game. Hope people took my advice with the Hot Tip and won some $$, I know I did!!!

  • December 2, 2021 at 9:25 pm

    It was a neat move by King to have Slavin on the PK early. I mean how much confidence does that instill? And Slavin was strong on just about every shift right from the start. His ice time was listed as 10:40 but it seemed like more and that’s because he was doing good things all night. I don’t know how good he will become but that was a very solid debut. Well done.

    On another point, Hagel seems to want to defer to Kane too often. I’m not sure how long that line will last. I’m jumping the gun but at some point how about Slavin and Hagel (and whoever else). Watching those two guys scrapping for loose pucks on the same line would be fun.

  • December 2, 2021 at 9:44 pm

    Some very strong all around performances by Debrincat ,Seth,Carpenter,McCabe, and yes Toews exclusively at the dot. Fleury was strong and did get some luck. Good for Kubalik finally potting one. Slavin looked very comfortable and gerofluid with his skating and positioning. The whole Defense really did a solid job after Murphy went out. On a negative side ,Dach was not very good . He just does not make many clean plays let alone elite and dangerous ones. Strome as usual did nothing looking lethargic and slow. Besides the faceoffs,I’m sorry guys but Toews was terrible. He was rag dolled and physically beaten on many puck battles. There is something still wrong with him physically. He is always off ice 1st on his shift and again tonight was tapped on the shoulder by a bench coach at a key time and was unable to take the ice. It happened with 5.55 left in the game and he was needed for an offensive zone faceoff and nodded no. Eddie O was even caught off guard as he had just assured everyone that Toews would be coming out to take a big faceoff. It has become painful to watch and I wish it wasn’t happening. They got the win and off to New York!

  • December 2, 2021 at 9:50 pm

    Nice team effort with a lot of Puck/post luck
    Slavin- smooth quick skater w Plus IQ

    Dach- was painful to watch- especially in OT as was Toews in OT- Hagel and Slavin would both be better options in OT

  • December 2, 2021 at 10:02 pm

    I gotta say…I didn’t see this one coming. Happy to see it. Apparently, DeBrincat is a SOG machine. He led ALL players, from both teams, with 7 SOG. Kane had an absolutely ridiculous TOI of 25:30 and 2 SOG. Now, he does command respect and teams look to shut him down. Toews benefitted with 3 SOG. Hagel had 1 SOG. So…this line seems to be anemic. It was effectively shut down. Dach’s line? Well…he did do better in the FO. Okay. Although 0 SOG with 19:43 TOI and 2:34 on the PP. ZERO SOG. Strome didn’t do any better. 0 SOG, 12:12 TOI and 2:07 PP. What in the ever loving…. Keepin’ it clean. Kubalik 2 SOG…1 went in. Borgstrom…garbage on the FO at 15% and 2 SOG. You want to know who had a better line? Josiah Slavin. The kid had 3 SOG, 1 Assist, and was 50% at the FO. So…that’s the offense.
    Defensively? Noting that Murphy went out of the game early in the 1st Period…S. Jones had an absolutley ridiculous 29:38 TOI. I get that he’s the blue chip defenseman. But…that’s ridiculous. Yes, he scored and had an assist with 3 SOG. A definite solid line. McCabe had 3 SOG and 27:39 TOI. Gustafsson and Kalynuk had 0 SOG and played the defensive defensemen. C. Jones had 1 SOG and a decent amount of TOI at 18:05.
    Goaltending? Fleury had a nice night. The goal posts loved him somethin’ fierce…thankfully.
    Blackhawks won. I don’t know how…BUT…I’ll definitely take the W. Is DeBrusk an option? How is Reichel? At least Kurashev is back at Rockford. NEXT GAME!!!

  • December 2, 2021 at 10:11 pm

    Living in Washington State, I subscribe to ESPN+ to see most of Hawks games except the national games not on ESPN, which I can see through TNT or the NHL Network through Sling. ( Ah, also except I can’t watch any non-national Kraken games, including v. Blackhawks–but that’s another story.) In any event, I get a choice on ESPN+ of the Blackhawks’ or the other team’s broadcast, and I often switch over to the other team’s broadcast when the yuk-yukking and birthday greetings and cancer-talk gets more than annoying. I did that tonight, listening to Joe Beninati and color commentator Craig Laughlin. OMG, these guys were fantastic compared to what Chicago gets served up in the booth. I really enjoyed a yukity-yuk free broadcast. They knew more about the Hawks players than our own current and auditioning announcing teams.

  • December 2, 2021 at 10:13 pm

    Very happy for Slavin with his first pt ever in NHL and what a nice move to get the puck to $Jones who is really a better player then I thought. .
    And the Hawks found a way to beat a strong team with giving just 28 s on goal .
    Big test with the Rangers next game.
    Seems to me that the Hawks are playing with a lot more confidence now.
    They know they can come back and they did it again tonight .
    Toews is not the player he was and maybe give him a break for a game or two like somebody what’s saying lately here . Hope he is fine and that he will get better soon .

  • December 2, 2021 at 10:46 pm

    What a great win. Coming from behind against an elite team is a great look for this team. There were stretches where the Hawks really dictated play and there were stretches that they were holding on for dear life but at no point during the game did you get a sense that the team wasn’t trying. I even thought that Strome had a noticeable (in a good way) game.

    Seth Jones is the real deal. I love watching him play. If the Hawks do claw their way back into playoff consideration this season, it will be on the back of Seth Jones.

    If Dach can’t shoot the puck one on one against the goalie from eight feet, what better chance is he going to get? It’s like Maverick in Top Gun not being able to engage, it really doesn’t look better than that.

    Kane and DeBrincat just work. Would like to see these two back together for longer stretches. Let’s find at least one top six line that can be a consistent threat game by game. I think Dach is simply not there yet offensively to be playing with the likes of Kane or DeBrincat right now. Is there anyone who can?

    KUBALIK! So happy to see him score a goal scorers goal on that PP entry. That is the kind of goal that can potentially wake him up. He did not mess around with the puck, he got it, settled it down, then buried it. More of that please.

    It was nice to see the Hawks hit three goals in regulation. Bit it would be nice to see the team get there earlier and carry the lead late instead of chasing, again. Hope the team can start converting on more of their high quality chances. Hardman in on the goalie shoots wide. Dach in alone on the goalie chooses to pass to a guy totally covered. Toews hits the post… This team is getting good chances, eventually they will start to fall, right?

    Was glad the Hawks fought back to get at least one point but was ecstatic that they were able to secure the second. Great finish to a well fought game. 7-3 in the last ten is a great stretch against nice talent, hope the Hawks can bring that same effort against the Rangers.

  • December 2, 2021 at 11:04 pm

    I know it’s only one game but Slavin already looks like a better player than RJ and gave a definite lift to the team even before his nice assist on Jones goal

    27 minutes TOI is not unusual for a #1 D which is what Seth Jones is. Keith in his prime got those minutes

    Jones also had an awesome game – the pass to spring Cat for the first was another great pass from him plus the game tying goal

    Toews I thought was better tonight and not just faceoffs – he does tire easily but he was more active had a couple of decent scoring chances- still not himself but better

    Hopefully Stillman and/or DeHaan is able to fill in for Murphy – he’ll be out a while

    Dach was not terrible – he creates for himself and others but he’s overthinking his offensive opportunities- that 2 on 1 with Strome being a classic example – that should have been a goal or an amazing save instead not even a shot

    IDK about Borgstrom – maybe there’s something there but how patient can Hawks be – I guess he’s got until TJ is back to show he should stay

    Great win great road win against a top 5 team – they passed well defended well and do seem to be gaining confidence


  • December 2, 2021 at 11:08 pm

    Last 3 games, beat the Blues, beat the Sharks in every area but on the scoreboard, one that got away and battled hard, found a way to win against Caps tonight. Maybe not pretty but getting it done the main thing, 7 and 3 in last 10 since King took over and people still whining about it, lol.

  • December 2, 2021 at 11:13 pm

    Ian – did you notice the PP at the end of the second game tied

    12 88 77 4 8 – there’s your top unit and it doesn’t include 19 nor should it

    However the way they used the two units shows it’s also about keeping Kane out there for the whole time and switching up all the other bodies at some point

  • December 2, 2021 at 11:50 pm

    The Hawks are 8-12-2 good for 26th overall and that is supposed to be good? Lol.

    How has Toews has not scored in 22 games?

    How does anyone expect anything from Strome when he plays about 12 minutes a game or he gets healthy scratched.

    If Boqvist would have been caught up ice like Jones was on Washingtons third goal he would have been watching the next 5 games from the press box. Crickets from the Jones fans about his lack of defense.

  • December 3, 2021 at 12:14 am

    Borgstrom took a step in reverse tonight. I think the clock may be ticking on him. I absolutely agree with a previous poster on the Overtime combo of Toews and Dach. That was painful to watch. Would have rather seen Hagel and Slavin out there. Use Toews for the initial faceoff to get the primary possession in O.T. then get him off. His lack of strength and physicality is really magnified on 3 on 3 play . Dach skated like a glacier in O.T. yuck.

  • December 3, 2021 at 12:42 am

    Thats what this team is going to be, battle keep it close, get solid goaltending, play strong defense, limit mistakes, going to be some but limiting them, that reduces scoring chances. They’ll win their share of games, let the whole season play out, that has a way of balancing things out, for the team, players in a slump who stick around, lets the coach weed out who he doesn’t want to play, keep who he does. Only a quarter of the way through the season yet. See what they look like in April, that is what’s important not yesterday, playoffs be a tough row to hoe, but time will tell.

  • December 3, 2021 at 2:02 am

    I understand patience and keeping games close and all but our top 3 line Center,s play is not acceptable by any standards and hasn’t been all year. They have to drive the play and create. Our Center,s are like a deep dark hole. The puck goes in and never comes out again. We also have to win some of these 50/50 puck battles at the Center position. Look at this teams Center,s statistics and compare them to any other team in the league.

  • December 3, 2021 at 5:36 am

    many are finally seeing DACH at average/below average skill type like Strome. Did Blowman and Company ruin this DACH kid, 100% rushed this kid. this draft pick might be worst than TY JONES!

    hell Dominic finally scored, hey Kyle trade him while his stock is going up brah!

    Toews-just beating a dead horse; he doesnt have anything left sad, but he gives a 110% effort which is even harder to swallow because you know damn right he wants to be back to normal

    4th keeps rolling with the bump and grind. finally we can leave 4 lines rolling in some games

  • December 3, 2021 at 5:51 am

    Enjoyable game. The team with better goaltending won. Enjoy it while it lasts.

    Dach looked like he was scared shitless and probably was, especially when Ovechkin was on the ice. He looks more and more like Nylander – lazy and timid. Like Nylander, he continues to paint himself into a corner and throw the puck away in panic.

    As someone observed last night, they look like they have more energy and more enthusiasm (except for 77 and 17) since King took over.

  • December 3, 2021 at 7:31 am

    John Galt-finally speaking about the timid DACH, reminds of Daze big frame wouldn’t hit. if dach had 25% of big joe/chara attitude he would be great.

    dachs attitude seem snobby, which is bad because he hasn’t earned anything. that 3rd pick attitude better change soon

  • December 3, 2021 at 7:38 am

    Stape – you mean the 3rd Washington goal where the Hawks were on the PP and Kane turns the puck over in the O zone just as the Washington player comes out of the penalty box and gets a breakaway because of Kane’s turnover and a lot of lucky timing – that was the one that was Jones’s fault for not hanging back at centre ice while Kane is entering the zone on the PP?

  • December 3, 2021 at 8:24 am

    And you didn’t want to give Clendining $2mil for just faceoffs? He would be our fourth top goal scorer too right now.

  • December 3, 2021 at 8:52 am

    If I didn’t watch the game last night and just read the comments, I would have thought we lost 6-0.

  • December 3, 2021 at 8:54 am

    The Posts won this game for the Hawks! Brilliant work by the wood-work!

    Some positives:
    Slavin – Smart player, you can see that right away. Makes the right pass, is in the right place, decent skills, good skater, great size, responsible in the defensive zone. I can’t wait to see him and Entwhistle on the same line!
    Borgstrom – Another smart player, excellent in the defensive zone, he should center Slavin and Entwhistle to make it a great 3rd line.
    Kalynuk and C.Jones – Man, I really enjoyed watching these two kids play! Smart, tough, and skilled. Plus, we have Alec Regula, Isaac Phillips and Ian Mitchell all playing well in Rockford. I would be good with getting rid of Murphy, DeHaan, and McCabe.
    Fluery – Just wow!

    Some negatives:
    Toews – I’m sorry for piling on, but he needs to play 4th line and get 10 minutes a night with Khaira, Carpenter, Hardman, and ReeseJohnson. He’s done!
    Strome – Time to go!
    Dach – I want to see more. He looks fat and slow to me! Is it me?

    The reason we won:
    Kane, DeBrincat, Seth Jones, Kubalik, and Fluery!
    Great win!!

  • December 3, 2021 at 9:08 am

    @Goose Maverick – I made the Dach / Daze comparison some time ago and have since downgraded it to Dach / Nylander. At least Daze scored goals (226).

  • December 3, 2021 at 9:10 am

    You are 100% right about a few people whining because the team is now 8-12-2. Off course those peoples who probably where asking to kick Bowman and Colliton out are still not happy that the Hawks had a bad start and don’t understand that your not in the film back to the Future ( you can’t go back in time ,it’s a movie ) ( you can’t erase the beginning of the season ) you have to live with it that’s all and look in front . they also don’t see the Hawks battling every game and winning many since King arrive .the Hawks are a proud group who wants to comeback and they play hard defensively lately ,yesterday again they gave up just 28 shots on goal against the number 2 team in the league ( now number 3 because they lost to the Hawks ) they don’t look back at the bad start because they know the future is in front and that they need more wins to reach the playoff. Maybe I am to positive but I do believe those players can bring their team to the next level . They also know they are not the most talented team in the league but when you play hard and give your best you can win games and get better and that’s what they do now .they are having fun playing and it shows. Thanks Hawks for the effort every game Thanks for letting me enjoy seeing you guys play with your heart and win.
    Thx to $ Jones to prove me wrong when I thought he was not a top player
    Thx to MAF to come back like a Vézina goalie even iff I had no doubt he could.

  • December 3, 2021 at 9:24 am

    Fluery is lucky to have played on the teams he has you win a lot of games. As of now the POST is his best friend as everything gets by him. His puck handling skills scare the shiiiite outta me, everytime he does it’s a disaster in the making…….I so wish we still had Corey.

    Outside of that the Hawks played a fairly good game and won because of gimmick time. Toews should hang em up, he just is a shell of his old self and it’s sorry to see.

    Back to back games in NYC is going to be tough w/out Murphy.

    On another note C Jones didn’t look very good and the Cap’s looked disinterested at best

  • December 3, 2021 at 9:39 am

    As a true Hawks fan you can be both positive about great and good performances but still identify the obvious and continuous poor and deeply lacking performances. Guys if we want to see this organization progress none of us can be content with what we saw last night,and usually every game this year, from Dach Strome and Toews. If it is health and or conditioning issues with these individual players then it has to be addressed. It has been 22 or so games now and we are still in the same places with these players. It is OK to identify that as a fan and want something to be done with it. If it means dropping them to the 4th line,reducing minutes,placing them on the I.R. list so be it but what is going on now is not right and it’s not getting any better. Let’s get it solved and corrected one way or another.

  • December 3, 2021 at 9:44 am

    DollarBill. Great points on last night’s goaltending and the sketchy lackadaisical Washington play. Without Backstrom,Oshe,and a couple of grinders they got rid of they tend to have lapses.

  • December 3, 2021 at 10:43 am

    Does anyone else experience long delays in updates / new posts?

  • December 3, 2021 at 10:44 am

    Anyone notice it was Anton Forsberg vs Antti Raanta. Ott vs Caro 3-2 Ott.

  • December 3, 2021 at 11:46 am

    John Galt. A few months ago I experienced long delays but all of a sudden without me doing anything it stopped and went back to real time. I notice when your tag name and e mail info is not saved and viewable that the comments are not in real time. I’m not a big computer or web poster as this site is about the only one I regularly read and post on.

  • December 3, 2021 at 11:55 am

    @Tim W. – I think you nailed it.

  • December 3, 2021 at 12:48 pm

    @JR Roman

    Forsberg played outta his butt and had 47 saves!

    Anyone notice that Hartman has grown up into a real good hockey player
    and our cousin Vinny has as many point as Dach and Toews

  • December 3, 2021 at 1:38 pm

    Kamph has as many Goals as Toews and Dach combined.

  • December 3, 2021 at 8:28 pm

    Toews looks fairly sound positionally. He battles more than most players. I wouldn’t write him off. Also toews is all about peaking at the right time. Right now defensively based on what I’ve seen he’s been okay.

    People point out toews isn’t scoring, last I checked not many are.

    It is too bad Stan is gone in a way. Hood in that he seemingly may have kept coach jc around.

    Stan being gone is especially bad for team USA and Blackhawks. It seemed the originally planned team USA was going to be at least five Blackhawks, three of them being from the blue line. Jones McCabe Murphy cat kane, I guess that would be it.

    This was a fun game to watch

  • December 4, 2021 at 8:35 am

    We live in the DC area and got to go to the game for the first time since covid. My 17-yo son is a big Caps fan so this was a nice win. Being there, I observed that the Caps were not disinterested and it was a pretty even game. The caps hit a lot of posts but also got a freebie on the breakaway. Was excited for Slavin.
    I’m sure we overpaid but $Jones is a really good player. Reminds me of overpaying for Soupy at the time, which turned out to be a good move.
    Anyway, I get the frustration with 19, but no one if trying harder. Give me him over a young, lazy player any day.
    Dach needs to be better. Period.
    Also I do like the local caps announcers as someone else mentioned – Joe B and Locker call the game well.

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