Series (Game 3 of 5)

Chicago leads 3-2

Game 1: Thursday, October 10th
Blue Jackets2
Game 2: Tuesday, October 29th
Blue Jackets2Final
Game 3: Friday, December 20th
Blue Jackets1Final
Game 4: Monday, January 20th
Blue Jackets5
Game 5: Saturday, February 15th
Blue Jackets1

Blue Jackets 1

(12-15-2, 29 pts)

Blackhawks 3

(16-13-0, 36 pts)

8:30 PM ET, December 20, 2002

United Center, Chicago, Illinois

1 2 3 T
CBJ 1 0 01
CHI 0 2 13

S. Sullivan (Blackhawks - C): Goals: 2, Assists: 0

J. Thibault (Blackhawks - G): Saves: 28, Save Pct.: .966

A. Karpovtsev (Blackhawks - D): Goals: 0, Assists: 0

Sullivan strikes twice in 3:01 span

CHICAGO (AP) -- Chicago Blackhawks forward Steve Sullivan took a direct approach to bust out of scoring slump Friday night against the Columbus Blue Jackets: He shot the puck.

Steve Sullivan

After going three games without a shot on goal, Sullivan managed four shots on Friday. Two got past Columbus goalie Marc Denis to help the Blackhawks earn a 3-1 win.

Sullivan, who recorded his second two-goal game this season, beat Denis twice in a 3:01 span of the second period. Entering Friday's contest, he had just one goal in his last 13.

"I was playing on the periphery and not creating chances for myself and my teammates,'' Sullivan said. "I've got to do that. I wasn't getting any chances the last three games.''

On Friday, Sullivan scored on a rebound from the slot and on a backhander while driving to the net.

"The last couple of game things weren't going my way,'' he said. "They were tonight.''

Chicago's Kyle Calder added an insurance goal with 3:47 left in the game. Jocelyn Thibault made 28 saves.

Sean Pronger scored for the Blue Jackets, who got 27 saves from Denis. Columbus was 0-for-6 on power-play chances.

"They were a little hungrier than us,'' Blue Jackets coach Dave King said. "We had some chances on the power play, enough I thought to get a goal.''

The Blackhawks have won two straight games and are 5-1-1 in their last seven.

Chicago was 0-for-4 on the power play, and has converted only one its last 34 chances.

Pronger opened the scoring with 7:42 left in the first period on a one-timer from the left circle.

Sullivan's first goal, at with 8:27 left in the second period, tied it at 1.

Set up by Phil Housley, Sullivan, fired in a high shot from the slot with Denis out of position. Denis had stopped Theo Fleury's initial shot, but slipped out of position clearing the rebound.

Sullivan gave Chicago a 2-1 lead 3:01 later. After taking a feed from Tyler Arnason, he moved in alone on Denis and converted a backhander.

With six minutes left, Denis threw his stick while thwarting a point-blank chance by Chicago's Igor Korolev, but wasn't penalized.

Calder completed the scoring when he fired from the top of the left circle, drove to the net and banged in his own rebound.

Game notes

Chicago D Jon Klemm sustained an injury to his left hand in the first period and did not return. After the game, his left index and middle fingers were bandaged. Klemm said X-rays were taken, but he didn't know the extent of the injury. He's scheduled to be examined by a hand specialist on Saturday. ... Blackhawks LW Chris Simon was a healthy scratch for the second straight game. ... Columbus LW Rick Nash, the NHL's top draft pick in 2002, missed his fourth game with a bruised back. He's day-to-day. ... Denis has started 12 straight games and 31 of the Blue Jackets' 32 contests this season.

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