ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Rapid reaction to the Chicago Blackhawks’ 3-1 win over the Minnesota Wild on Saturday at the Xcel Energy Center.
How it happened: The Hawks played a solid game defensively, eventually scoring off their advantage in offensive chances. Troy Brouwer had arguably his best effort of the season, switching lines in-game to play with Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. Brouwer put in a rebound of a Duncan Keith shot in the waning seconds of the middle period to open the scoring. Then, early in the third period, it was Keith’s turn to net a Brouwer rebound for the Hawks’ second goal. Patrick Kane had assists on both those goals. Brouwer finished with 4 shots, 3 hits, and 3 blocked shots in his most noticeable game to date. The Wild made a game of it with a late goal after the Hawks were caught scrambling in their own zone, but Jake Dowell’s empty-netter sealed the win.
What it means: The Hawks rebounded in a huge way from an awful defensive effort the night before against Edmonton. They limited the Wild to 16 shots in the first two periods when the game was still up for grabs. Marty Turco had a relatively easy night until late in the game when the Wild got some energy off their lone goal. The Hawks improved their record to 7-5-1.
Injury update: The Hawks were missing three regulars as Dave Bolland missed his first game of the season after leaving early on Friday night. Bolland is day to day with an upper body injury that is not believed to be directly related to his back problems of a year ago. Marian Hossa remains out of the lineup, but Brian Campbell could be back as soon as Monday in New York.
What’s next: The Hawks will have the day off in New York on Sunday before taking on the Rangers on Monday night. It’s the first multiple-game road trip of the season but it ends right there as the Hawks return home for a Wednesday game against New Jersey.