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Crawford stellar in return home but Canadians dominate play in 2-1 OT win


The Chicago Blackhawks lost to the Montreal Canadians 2-1 in overtime on Saturday. The Blackhawks will come back home and play the Edmonton Oilers on Sunday evening.

This was the sloppiest game that the Blackhawks played all year. They committed 12 turnovers and 6 in the first period alone. A majority of the game was played in the Blackhawks end as the Canadians racked up a 38-20 edge in shots total. There was no scoring in the first period as the only action came when Kris Versteeg fought Brandon Gallagher.

In the second period, the Canadians would dominate and finally get on the board when Andrei Markov beat Corey Crawford with a wrist shot at 12:54. But the Canadians would keep pouring it on and only Crawford would keep them in the game. Perhaps the save of the year was made when Crawford lost his stick and made a save with his blocker on a breakaway and then happened to deflect the follow up shot from Lars Eller that was in midair when he raised his right skate to get a piece of it at the end of the second period.

The Blackhawks were badly outshot 12-5 in the final period. However, the Blackhawks would manage to avoid their first shutout of the year when Marian Hossa deflected a Jonathan Toews pass behind Carey Price and into the net at 9:22.

During the short overtime period, all of the action was in the Blackhawks zone. The Canadians racked up 4 shots and the final one would see Markov beat Crawford to the top corner of the net over the glove with a wrist shot at 1:28 to give the Canadians the victory.

What it means

The Blackhawks have now lost three games in a row. This was a poor performance as the Blackhawks were badly outplayed. However, the Blackhawks regain the lead in the Central division with the point as they have 68 points compared to 67 for St. Louis. But St. Louis has 3 games in hand on the Blackhawks.

3 stars of the game

3. Carey Price- There wasn’t much work that needed to be done by Price. It was a light performance for Price who made 19 saves on 20 shots. This was the second straight game that Price has allowed one goal.

2. Corey Crawford- So far this was the best performance by Crawford since he returned from injury and maybe of the year. The Blackhawks do not get a point without Crawford who made 36 saves on 38 shots and sent twitter into a frenzy with his skate blade save. Since the return from injury, Crawford is winless with a 0-1-4 record.

1. Andrei Markov- Without question the best player on the ice was Markov who scored two goals and was a plus two. Markov is the workhorse for the Canadians and he led all Montreal skaters in ice time with 25:52 and blocked 3 shots as well.

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