The Dallas Stars hosted the Chicago Blackhawks Thursday night in Dallas. The Hawks pulled off a come-from-behind victory with relentless fury over the Stars, 3-2, after being down 2-0.
The Hawks got off to a fast start in the first period, completely controlling the pace and temp of the game throughout most of the first period. Dallas goaltender Kari Lehtonen stopped everything that was thrown at him in spectacular fashion. The Hawks out-shot the Stars in the first period 12-6, and Lehtonen stopped them all. The Stars’ Left Winger, Louis Eriksson, scored a shorthanded goal with just 1.4 seconds remaining in the first period.
Early in the second period, Dallas had an opportunity to double it’s lead on a penalty shot after center Ryan Garbutt was brought to the ice by Hawks defenseman, Brent Seabrook. Garbutt however, failed to seize the golden opportunity laid before him, as Blackhawks goaltender, Corey Crawford stopped Garbutt’s shot.
The Stars did however take a 2-0 lead minutes later, when Hawks defenseman Michal Rozsival turned the puck over to Stars’ Left Winger, Ray Whitney, right in front of the net, where Whitney buried a backhand past Crawford.
The Hawks drew closer on a lucky Patrick Sharp power-play goal that deflected off of the skate of Dallas defenseman, Trevor Daley‘s skate and into the net. Dallas nearly expaned their lead when Dallas defenseman, Alex Goligoski sent a slapshot that trickled through the pads of Corey Crawford, and was en route to the net, when at the last second, Hawks defenseman Duncan Keith saved the day by clearing the puck, just before crossing the goal line.
In the third period, the Hawks continued their game of relentless pace and tempo, only to be continually robbed by the stellar play in net from Kari Lehtonen. Late in the third period, while on their sixth power-play of the night, Hawks captain/center Jonathan Toews tied the game, by beating Lehtonen with a wrist-shot.
The game went to overtime, where shortly into the overtime period, Stars captain/left winger, Brenden Morrow, took an ill-timed interference penalty, leaving the Hawks and Stars to play 3-on-3 hockey(Hawks d-man Niklas Hjalmarsson was in the penalty box on a tripping call) in the overtime period. It didn’t take long for the Hawks to take advantage of the wide-open ice, as Patrick Kane fed Marian Hossa a beautiful pass, that Hossa slapped past Lehtonen, giving the Blackhawks a 3-2 victory.
Stars goaltender, Kari Lehtonen was nearly unbeatable all-night, making several great saves as the Hawks peppered him with 41 shots-on-goal.
Blackhawks defenseman, Brent Seabrook had an off night, turning the puck over and getting beat by Stars forwards most of the night. However his longtime defensive partner, Duncan Keith bailed him(and the rest of the team) out of trouble with a stellar night.
The Hawks went 3 for 7 on the power-play
It was a great night for all of the Hawks’ special teams. Along with success on the power-play, the Hawks were 2 for 2 on the penalty kill.
Jonathan Toews continued his strong play in the face-circle, going 13 for 20, while Dave Bolland showed improvement, going 12 for 20.
Patrick Sharp had a strong night, with a goal and two assists. He also drew two penalties on the night.
The Blackhawks(4-0-0, 8pts) are off to their best start in 40 years. They will travel to Columbus to take on their central division rivals, the Columbus Blue Jackets(1-2-1, 3pts) on Saturday. Puck drop is set for 8:00 PM CT.