Rapid Reaction: Blackhawks 2, Canucks 1
November, 24, 2013
By Monte Stewart | Special to ESPNChicago.com
VANCOUVER -- Here’s a quick look at the Chicago Blackhawks’ 2-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks at Rogers Arena on Saturday.
How it happened: Andrew Shaw and Marcus Kruger, with the winner, scored only nine seconds apart early in the third period. The goals enabled the Blackhawks to overcome a 1-0 deficit that they had endured since late in the first period.
Even after giving up a goal on a five-on-three power play, the Blackhawks continued to work hard and pressure a Vancouver team that was playing its second game in two nights. Chicago’s defense and goaltender Corey Crawford held the fort until the Blackhawks’ offense finally found a way to beat Vancouver netminder Roberto Luongo, who allowed both goals to go through his legs.
What it means: The Blackhawks (16-4-4) have won three of their past four games. They also kept pace with the Anaheim Ducks for first place in the Western Conference and overall in the NHL. The Blackhawks remained just a point out of the top spot in the conference and the league, as they won following Anaheim’s victory over the Phoenix Coyotes earlier Saturday.
Player of the game: Chicago goaltender Crawford was steady while recording 36 saves in his 14th consecutive appearance. The Canucks outshot the Blackhawks 37-29, but Vancouver’s only goal came on a five-on-three power play. Crawford had no chance as Ryan Kesler converted a rebound on a bang-bang play. Crawford rarely had to face an overly dangerous chance, but he helped his cause by controlling rebounds and staying square to the puck on almost every Vancouver shot.
Stat of the game: Patrick Kane extended his points streak -- the longest current run in the NHL -- to 10 games with a nifty assist in the third period. He delivered a spin-around backhand pass that Kruger deflected between Luongo’s legs, creating a 1-1 tie at 4:40. Kane now has five goals and nine assists during his streak, tying him for the third-longest of the season behind Alex Steen of St. Louis (13 games) and Vancouver’s Henrik Sedin (12). Kane’s streak matches the 10-game points tear that John Tavares of the New York Islanders enjoyed between Oct. 5 and Oct. 26.
What’s next: The Blackhawks move on to Edmonton for Monday’s game against the Oilers. It will be the fourth game of a seven-game road trip. After facing the Oilers, the Blackhawks will go to Calgary for a game Wednesday, then conclude their 10-day adventure with back-to-back contests in Dallas on Friday and Phoenix on Saturday.