5 Thoughts on Chicago Blackhawks 3-2, OT Victory Over Sabres

Gustav Forsling
Gustav Forsling /

The Chicago Blackhawks continued their winning ways against the Buffalo Sabres with a 3-2 come from behind victory in overtime.

It was the Blackhawks’ 12th straight victory over the Sabres, but it did not come easy.  They pumped 51 shots on goal.  The Sabres also blocked 31 shots.  They made it harder than they needed it to be, but in the end, the Blackhawks squeaked out a must-needed 2 points.

So let’s take a look at 5 thoughts from tonight’s contest.

The Gustav Forsling Show

Gustav Forsling had arguably his best game as a professional.  He scored the game-winning goal with :05 remaining in overtime.  He also added two assists in the victory.

Coach Quenneville had faith in Forsling as he played well throughout the night  He had multiple shifts in the overtime for the Blackhawks and he was rewarded in the end.  Forsling has proved to be a young, hopeful defenseman that Blackhawks fans can be excited about.

Alex DeBrincat continues to shine

The Blackhawks’ 19 year old rookie continues to shine as one of the very few bright spots currently on this team.  After an absolute dreadful power play near the end of the first period, DeBrincat scored in the second period for a power play tally, his 12th of the year.

DeBrincat was lined up with Jonathan Toews and Brandon Saad tonight.  The line showed more life than it has recently in the past few games.

Fourth Line Energizes

It’s impressive on how the fourth line of the Blackhawks provide energy game in and game out.  Tommy Wingels, John Hayden, and Lance Bouma provide hits, shots on goals, and fast-paced hockey.  Wingels tonight with a huge short-handed goal to tie the game late in the third.

They set a good pace throughout the night for the Blackhawks.  Unfortunately, they did not show up on the scoreboard.  As great as it is that this line produces the hard, grinding work, it is up to the rest of the team to follow suit and score some goals.

The Patrick Sharp experiment must end

After going pointless in 16 straight games, Sharp in his last 23 games, has 4 points (1G 3A) and a

plus/minus -6.  He had an assist tonight, but has not provided nearly the amount of spark on offense that people were hoping he would.  He has looked slow, like many of the other Hawks recently.

He was brought in to provide offense, chemistry, and leadership.  Unfortunately, I am not seeing much of any of that.  Yes, he is being paid $1million this year at a discount, but his playing capability is just not there anymore.  He’s 35 years old.  Thanks for the memories, Sharpie, but it’s time you move on.

Net Presence…Vacant

The Blackhawks scored their first goal tonight on the power play with Brandon Saad screening Buffalo Sabres goalie, Robin Lehner.  Other than that instance, the Blackhawks did not have very much net presence at all.

Patrick Kane had time behind the Sabre net at one point, but had no one in front to pass to.  Lehner was good tonight, but there were some juicy rebounds that were left to be pounced on, but there were no Blackhawks around to finish.

Thank goodness that Rasmus Ristolainen was in front of Lehner on Forsling’s game-winner.

The Blackhawks will host the Arizona Coyotes on Sunday.  Let’s hope this is the beginning of a nice, long winning streak.