As the Blackhawks skated off after the final horn, Fleury waved
to the 15,067 fans.
"It's always fun playing in this building,'' Fleury said. "I
used to love playing in San Jose, but this place probably tops
that. It's good now that I only have to play here once a year,
"I kind of just picked it off,'' Arnason said. "I was going to
deke, but I just shot it instead.''
Chicago is 11-1-5 in its last 17 meetings with the Islanders.
The Blackhawks' only loss was the night New York honored former
coach Al Arbour on Jan. 25, 1997.
Hamrlik separated his left shoulder just over a minute into the
third period when he crashed into the end boards while on his
stomach. He will be out for four weeks.
The teams skated to a scoreless first period, as the Islanders
wasted a two-man advantage that lasted 1:38. Thibault made two of
his seven saves of the period during that stretch. Osgood made a
nice stick save on Phil Housley in the first minute of the game,
and then -- along with defenseman Kenny Jonsson -- managed to snuff a
breakaway by Fleury at 15:15.
"We had a great opportunity with that 5-on-3, and just couldn't
do anything with it,'' Islanders captain Michael Peca said. "We
had our chances, but couldn't capitalize.''
The Blackhawks took the lead at 7:52 of the middle period when
Sullivan, at the top of the crease, managed to tip Daze's centering
pass past Osgood as Islanders defenseman Adrian Aucoin scrambled to
"Aucoin wasn't facing me, and I was able to see the puck
coming,'' Sullivan said. "I sort of had to reach over him because
he's bigger than me -- as are most of the players in the league.''
Hamrlik tied it off a faceoff at 12:51. He cut in from the left
point, accepted a cross-ice feed from Jason Wiemer in the left
circle, and wristed a short side shot past Thibault.
Scatchard put the Islanders ahead 3:52 into the final period.
Wiemer's clear-in took a strange bounce off the back boards, and
Scatchard, by the left post, put a backhander in off Thibault's
Daze made it 2-2 at 7:49 when his slap shot from the top of the
left circle trickled past Osgood.
"I'm sure if you asked him, he'd like to have had those last
two goals back,'' Islanders coach Peter Laviolette said.
The Blackhawks won for just the fourth time on the road this
season (4-8-2), and Thibault (29 saves) said that winning away from
home is a must if Chicago is to qualify for the playoffs.
"We have to be better on the road,'' Thibault said. "Tonight
was a good example. The way we came back scoring two big goals
showed the character of the people in this room.''
Fleury played in his third game since being reinstated from
an NHL suspension for violating his substance-abuse aftercare
program. He was booed all night. ... Chicago started a three-game,
New York road trip. The Blackhawks visit the Rangers on Wednesday
and Buffalo on Friday.