Blackhawks revert to struggles in 3-1 loss to Kings

A lifeless start put Chicago in a hole it stood little chance of digging out of.

Patrick Sharp scored the only goal for the Chicago Blackhawks in a 3-1 loss to the Los Angeles Kings on Monday night. The game was a stark contrast from the 7-1 beatdown that the Blackhawks handed out to the Capitals the last time they were on the ice at the United Center.

The Kings got out to a 3-0 lead in the game that proved insurmountable for a team that’s struggled to mount comebacks this season. The team got one back when Sharp scored early in the third period to give the team some hope, but that’s all it got out of its 13th loss in 16 games.

Andy Andreoff, Torrey Mitchell, and Dion Phaneuf scored goals for the Kings, who improve to 32-22-5 with the win. They also outshot the Hawks, 30-22, and held a 28-25 lead in scoring chances, per Natural Stat Trick.

It’s hard to want to overreact to the results of these games at this point. The losses ultimately help the Blackhawks’ lottery odds more than they hurt their playoff odds, which were at 0.5 percent entering Monday, per Hockey-Reference. The team just isn’t that good, and it doesn’t take another loss to a very good L.A. team to come to terms with that.

Not everything was bad Monday, though. Sharp scoring a goal is always a nice sight. That line along with Alex DeBrincat and Ryan Hartman had good energy all evening. Brent Seabrook had a pretty good game with a team-high four shots on goal and a plus-22 even strength Corsi buoyed by score effects.

But it was hardly enough to keep up with the Kings, and a reminder that the 7-1 win over the Capitals was a blip on the radar more than anything. Now the team has a day off before returning to the UC to host the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday night.

3 stars

1. Dion Phaneuf (LA) — 1 goal, 3 shots on goal
2. Torrey Mitchell (LA) — 1 goal, 3 shots on goal
3. Jonathan Quick (LA) — 27 saves on 28 shots