- Scott Powers, ESPN Staff Writer
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How it happened: The Wild scored first, but the Blackhawks responded with four first-period goals. Blackhawks rookie forward Brandon Saad scored the team’s first goal and assisted on two more in the period. Bryan Bickell scored twice in the period, and Marian Hossa netted the fourth goal. Hossa was honored before the game for recently reaching 1,000 career regular-season games. The Wild made it interesting in the third period by scoring twice and pulling within a goal with less than 10 minutes left. Patrick Kane put the Blackhawks back ahead by two goals with his 12th goal of the season. Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford improved to 11-0-3.
Player(s) of the game: Bickell and Saad share this honor. Bickell had his first two-goal regular-season game. Saad had his first three-point performance. With four points in March so far, Saad has matched his total in January and February combined.
What it means: The Blackhawks won their 10th straight game, a franchise record, and extended their NHL-record points streak to start a season to 23 games. They also have an overall points streak of 29 regular-season games, which dates back to last season. They moved ahead of the 1977-78 Montreal Canadiens, who had a 28-game streak, and now trail only the 1979-80 Philadelphia Flyers’ 35-game streak. The Blackhawks are now 20-0-3 with an NHL-best 43 points on the season.
What’s next: The Blackhawks play the Colorado Avalanche for the first time this season. It’s the only Western Conference team the Blackhawks haven’t faced. The Blackhawks play the Avalanche in Chicago on Wednesday and in Colorado on Friday.