How it happened: The Hawks put on an anemic display on offense while the Blues played well defensively in Ken Hitchcock’s debut as coach. Again, the power play was part of the problem. The Blues scored once with the man advantage but the Hawks could not, despite multiple chances in the second period which would have gotten the visitors back in it. The Hawks’ fourth line and third defensive pair were scored on in the first period and a suddenly vulnerable penalty-killing unit gave up one in the second. But the story of the game was the lack of offense. Jaroslav Halak made one big save -- on Patrick Kane -- through the first 40 minutes when the game was still in doubt. The Hawks had some better chances in the third while St. Louis was protecting the lead but they mustered very little in the way of good shots or dangerous looks until it was too late.
What it means: It’s official. The Hawks are in a slump. Overtime wins and points have turned into regulation losses and pretty bad ones at that. Their offense is a mess as coach Joel Quenneville tried making sensible line changes but they produced nothing. The power play is stuck in mud with no signs of breaking out and while they were better defensively, the Hawks continue to hang their goaltenders out to dry. The Hawks have lost three in a row to drop to 8-4-3 on the season.
What’s next: The Hawks take off for Columbus immediately following the game to prepare for a Thursday matchup with the Blue Jackets. They’ll have a practice day there on Wednesday.