Feb 26, 2015; Sunrise, FL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks left wing Teuvo Teravainen (86) celebrates with defenseman Tim Erixon (34) after scoring a goal against the Florida Panthers in the first period at BB&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports
The Chicago Blackhawks came to play tonight against the Florida Panthers! They certainly had reason to be motivated. As we all know by now, on Tuesday night the Hawks were playing this same team when Patrick Kane went down and is now out with a broken clavicle for the next 12 weeks. Corey Crawford earned a shutout, as Chicago won by a score of 3-0. Here’s how it all played out.
Things got started early, as newly recalled Teuvo Teravainen scored 3:08 minutes into the game. He was playing on the third line, and was assisted by Andrew Shaw and David Rundblad. It was said on TV that everyone (including goaltender Luongo) expected TT to pass instead of shoot, so kudos to the young Fin for taking advantage of his opportunity. It was a well timed goal, and definitely gave the Hawks a much needed advantage.
Tim Erixon actually got the start on the third defensive pairing instead of veteran Michal Rozsival. He didn’t do himself any favors, as he was called for interference and the Panthers got a power play late in the first period. But the penalty kill held strong, and both Ben Smith and Brandon Saad drew penalty’s within seconds of each other. So the Hawks had a 4-on-3 advantage and then a 5-on-3 advantage. They ended up with nothing to show for it. Too much passing! The Hawks might be able to get away with this against the Panthers, but in the playoffs this is going to bite them in the butt.
Needless to say, the Hawks pretty much dominated the first period. They led in shots on goal 10-4.
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The second frame started with Jonathan Huberdeau of the Panthers tripping defenseman Kyle Cumiskey, so the Hawks had a power play. Again, too much passing! and nothing to show for it. But right as the PP ended, Duncan Keith made a great pass to Brandon Saad for the second goal of the night. You should have seen the look on Saad’s face. He was a happy human. 2-0, Blackhawks!
The third line looked good all night, and Bryan Bickell and Andrew Shaw delivered some big hits. Joakim Nordstrom of the forth line had some energy and spark as well.
The Panthers hung in there, and actually led the second period with 9 shots to the Hawks 8, but the score still held at the end of two.
Florida tried to get something going in the third, with 11 shots to Chicago’s 7. But Corey Crawford held strong, and ended up saving 20 shots on the night for the shutout. Jonathan Toews wrapped things up with an empty net goal at the end of regulation to make the final score 3-0, Chicago.
So the Hawks have played and won 2 games without Patrick Kane. They had a really good game tonight. It was a team effort, with all four lines contributing. The power play was 0-4, but that’s about the only bad thing I have to say.
Can they keep it up? We don’t have to wait very long to find out. The next game is Friday night against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Another 6:30 pm start time, so order those pizzas and be ready!
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