- Jesse Rogers, Chicago Cubs beat reporter
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BUFFALO -- Rapid reaction to the Blackhawks’ 4-3 win over the Sabres on Monday:
How it happened: That’s exactly what the Sabres must be thinking… how did it happen? The Hawks were down 2-0 early -- Buffalo scored on its first shot 14 seconds into the contest and again less than three minutes later -- but the Hawks scored the next four goals. And they did most of the damage playing without Niklas Hjalmarsson, who was kicked out of the game late in the first period after hitting Sabres winger Jason Pominville into the boards from behind. Marian Hossa scored twice on pinpoint shots while Patrick Kane also tallied in his hometown. Nick Leddy scored his first NHL goal on a shot from the point in the second period. The Hawks killed off a too-many-men-on-the-ice penalty late in the game to seal the win.
What it means: Corey Crawford, not Marty Turco, helped earn the Hawks their first win of the season, bringing their record to 1-1-1. Crawford recovered from giving up a goal on the first shot he saw, saving 32 for the game. Hossa has three goals and two assists in three games, carrying over a strong preseason performance.
Further punishment?: Hjalmarsson could face further penalties from the league after they review the hit on Pominville. A major penalty in addition to a game misconduct warrants further review.
What’s next: The Blackhawks fly home right after the game and continue their trend of playing every other day as they will host the Nashville Predators on Wednesday.