The Blackhawks would not get off to the start that they hoped as the Oilers took the lead when Ales Hemsky scored his 7th goal of the year at 6:08. However, the Blackhawks would answer back when Ben Smith deflected a Niklas Hjalmarsson shot past Devan Dubnyk at 14:26 to send the game tied at 1 heading into the locker room.
It was the second period that would see the Blackhawks stretch out the lead. Patrick Kane and Brandon Saad found Andrew Shaw in the left faceoff circle. Shaw beat Dubnyk with a wrist shot top shelf. Then a quirky play would lead to an Oilers goal. With the Blackhawks on a power play, there was a delayed penalty coming, Kane threw a pass off of the boards; however, no player was back and the puck went all the way down and into an empty net. The goal was credited to Boyd Gordon at 11:29. The Blackhawks had a 5 on 3 power play. Marian Hossa connected on a one timer from the point on a pass from Duncan Keith top shelf at 11:58 to regain the lead for the Blackhawks. Then a pretty passing play from Hossa to Patrick Sharp led to a 2 on 1. Sharp found Toews who made a beautiful forehand to backhand move to open up the legs of Dubnyk and slide it under his legs at 17:32.
The third period would see the Blackhawks lock down defensively. However, the Oilers would cut the lead to one when Taylor Hall beat Antti Raanta at 5:17. But the Blackhawks would respond as Brent Seabrook beat Dubnyk with a slap shot from the point at 14:19 on an unassisted goal. The Oilers would pull the goalie but would not mount any offense as the Blackhawks cruised to a win.
What it means
The Blackhawks snapped a three game losing streak and two at home. They extend their lead in the central to three points with their 30th win on the season. However, the St. Louis Blues have four games in hand on the Blackhawks.
3 stars of the game
3. Jonathan Toews- It was a good game for the captain overall. Toews scored his 17th goal of the season. In addition, Toews led the team with five shots on goal, blocked one shot and had one takeaway. Toews won 17 of 23 faceoffs he took.
2. Duncan Keith- On the score sheet, it says that Keith had one assist but that doesn’t quantify everything that he did. Keith had four shots on goal, blocked two shots in 25:49 of ice time. It was a great defensive game for Keith whose two takeaways and active stick led to a couple of goals.
1. Marian Hossa- It was a great 35th birthday for Hossa who scored one goal and one assist with three shots on goal. This was the second straight game that Hossa has scored a goal and he now has 17 on the season.