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Friday, December 16, 2011
Hawks dominate Ducks from the start

By Jesse Rogers

CHICAGO -- Maybe the biggest surprise of the Blackhawks win over the Anaheim Ducks is it didn’t come in overtime. The solid, 4-1 win was executed in 60 minutes and in dominant fashion.

“It’s great,” John Scott said. “The team’s been rolling. We didn’t go to overtime this time. We finished them off in three periods.”

After 11 overtime games this season, including the last four before Friday night, it was a bit of relief for the Hawks to coast to the victory.

“We’re learning to start well,” Jamal Mayers said. “I think that’s going to be the key for us. We want to keep getting better.”
Starts have been a point of emphasis for the Hawks lately. While there can always be mitigating circumstances to second and third period stats due to leads and deficits, first periods tell a true story. Both teams start with a clean slate. Coming in, the Hawks had scored 24 goals in first periods this season while giving up 26.

“I thought scoring first was important, Jammer made a nice play, walked out, got a big goal, got us in the lead,” Joel Quenneville said.

And the Hawks never gave it back.

Emery stays hot

Ray Emery
Ray Emery remained the hot hand in net for the Blackhawks in Friday's win.

Ray Emery was voted No. 1 star of the game nearly getting the Hawks first shutout of the season, stopping 24 shots. Teemu Selanne scored with 1:47 left in the third.

“I’ll just take the win, that’s good,” Emery said of losing the shutout.

Emery wasn’t tested as much in the first 40 minutes as he has been in previous games, but he’s making both the easy and hard saves. No softies have snuck by recently.

“Emery is doing a great job,” Joel Quenneville said. “Ray’s very solid, looks composed, he’s fighting through screens and finding pucks and not a lot of loose stuff around him as well, he’s been very clean around his net. We’ve got some momentum here, we want to make sure we go into the break on a positive note.”

Quenneville is talking about the NHL Christmas shutdown coming next week and when he refers to momentum it means Emery has the net for the time being.

“It’s fun playing for sure,” Emery said. “I don’t take anything for granted. You never know how things are going to go. If you expect something and you’re not willing to work for it you’re usually not going to get it.”

Slappers

• With a goal and assist each, Patrick Sharp and Marian Hossa have tied Jonathan Toews for the team lead with 34 points.

• Going back to last season when he signed with the Ducks, Ray Emery is 15-3-2 in 22 games played. He earned his first assist of the season on Dave Bolland’s power play goal in the second period. It’s his fourth career point.

• John Scott’s first period assist was his first since Dec. 11, 2010.

• The Hawks have killed off 19 consecutive power-play attempts after going 3-for-3 against the Ducks.

The Quote

“I might just give it to myself,” -John Scott on handing off the heavyweight belt the Hawks give out to the player of the game. The current winner awards it to the next guy.