When Broken is Easily Fixed: Blackhawks 4, Stars 2
Solid goaltending continues to propel the Blackhawks as they grab two points in Dallas.
Thursday night saw the Blackhawks close out their two-game series against the Stars with a 4-2 victory at the American Airlines Center in Dallas.
Despite being outshot 15-4, the Blackhawks finished the first period with a 1-0 lead, thanks to an early goal by Dominik Kubalik. The play was started by David Kampf, who won a board battle in the neutral zone before Brandon Hagel made a pass to Kuablik at the blueline to spring a breakaway.
🚨 Dominik Kubalik gave Chicago the lead with a backhand shot between Anton Khudobin's legs.— Brandon Cain (@brandonmcain) March 12, 2021
🍎 Brandon Hagel
🍏 David Kampf#Blackhawks 1, #GoStars 0 pic.twitter.com/9xp2raewDp
Kevin Lankinen bailed his team out several times in the first period — both during 5-on-5 play and on special teams — stopping 15 shots. That included two from high-danger areas.
During a power play early in the second period, Carl Soderberg deflected Adam Boqvist’s shot from the point to put the Blackhawks up 2-0.
🚨 PP Carl Soderberg redirected Adam Boqvist's shot for a power-play goal.— Brandon Cain (@brandonmcain) March 12, 2021
🍎 Adam Boqvist
🍏 Patrick Kane#Blackhawks 2, #GoStars 0 pic.twitter.com/FdLE7VRdui
Following Soderberg’s tally, Duncan Keith scored his first goal of the season, giving the Hawks a 3-0 lead.
🚨 Duncan Keith increased the lead with a blast from the point off Esa Lindell's failed clearing attempt.#Blackhawks 3, #GoStars 0 pic.twitter.com/O43Z58AU4A— Brandon Cain (@brandonmcain) March 12, 2021
To close out the frame, Alex DeBrincat continued his hot streak, scoring his 15th goal of the year during a Blackhawks’ power play.
🚨 PP Alex DeBrincat scored a power-play goal from the right face-off circle. Chicago has scored four goals on eight shots.— Brandon Cain (@brandonmcain) March 12, 2021
🍎 Patrick Kane
🍏 Adam Boqvist#Blackhawks 4, #GoStars 0 pic.twitter.com/mVVElsX5V7
This goal put the Hawks up 4-0 going into the third period. Chicago was shooting 50 percent up to this point with four goals on only eight shots.
Midway through the third period, Roope Hintz scored the first Stars goal of the game, making it 4-1.
🚨 Roope Hintz scored from the slot to end Kevin Lankinen's shutout bid at 9:43 of the third period.— Brandon Cain (@brandonmcain) March 12, 2021
🍎 Jamie Oleksiak (#SteelAlum)
🍏 Andrew Cogliano#Blackhawks 4, #GoStars 1 pic.twitter.com/ic1q1APPqN
John Klingberg followed this up with and end-to-end goal that made it 4-2. But that would be the final score despite a late, extended shift by Dallas.
- The good: The Hawks grabbed two points in regulation. Two of their four goals were scored at even-strength. DeBrincat is a superstar. You could see the numbers on their uniforms.
- The bad: Amusing as it may have been, shooting 50 percent on only 8 shots is absolutely unsustainable. Lankinen was stellar in the first 50 minutes of Thursday’s game, and again in the final stretch. While that isn’t a negative, it’s frustrating to see the Hawks regularly depend on their goaltender when they’re having trouble staying out of their own end. Had the Hawks’ shots not been finding the back of the Dallas net, Thursday’s outing may have looked worse than Tuesday night.
- The ugly: The Blackhawks once again struggled to retain puck possession, especially in the first two frames. Owning only 25 percent of possession is playing with fire. And while the third period was their best of the game, it got a little too close for comfort in the final stretch. Both goals allowed by the Blackhawks came uncontested and from the slot.
- The ugliest: Black numbers on a black jersey is unforgivable.
- The Blackhawks continue to play the Ross and Rachel “Will They/Won’t They” game. It’s a bit un-nerving. It definitely keeps things interesting. But as a fan, I want them to build a Stanley Cup contender, not win a daytime Emmy.
- I remember going to a game where the Hawks put on 50 shots and lost 2-1 in overtime. Thursday’s game was the inverse of that. The basic science behind this is that hockey is weird and sometimes doesn’t make any sense whatsoever. /
- Kevin Lankinen - 28 saves on 30 shots
- Adam Boqvist - 2 assists, 55 Corsi-For percentage (all strengths)
- Alex DeBrincat - 1 goal, 21:19 time on ice
The Blackhawks head to the BB&T center in Florida to face the Panthers for a 6 p.m. puck drop on Saturday.