Simply getting the puck on net paid off for the Dallas Stars.
Michael Ryder scored on a deflection with 5:02 left, and Dallas rallied with three late goals on Thursday night to beat Chicago 3-1 and end the Blackhawks’ four-game winning streak.
With the game tied 1-1, Ryder got behind Chicago’s defense and redirected Mike Ribeiro’s shot between Corey Crawford’s left pad and the near goal post for his team-leading 24th goal.
Dallas’ Loui Eriksson was credited with a goal 74 seconds later that made it 3-1. He scored after Ryder’s shot deflected off Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook’s skate.
Dallas’ Steve Ott scored on a deflection midway through the third to tie it at 1.
After managing just 10 shots through the first two periods against Chicago’s tight defensive play, the Stars recorded 15 in the third and connected three times
”We didn’t have many shots going into the third, and we knew we were still in the game,” Ryder said. ”We just had to make sure we got more pucks to the net and stepped our game up.
”We knew we had to play a hard 20 (minutes), and we did that. We came out and ended up scoring three goals. We threw pucks at the net and we got some traffic.”
The Blackhawks and Crawford appeared to be in position to hang on for their first shutout this season until Ott scored.
Chicago had allowed only five goals during its winning streak. But the tidy defensive play and solid goaltending by Crawford restored order after the Blackhawks lost nine straight – giving up 38 goals in the process.
A fresh wave of breakdowns sank Chicago quickly in the third period on Thursday.
”Tough, tough, tough. Brutal,” Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said. ”Tonight, everything was going in a real good way, and then we had a third period that you wonder where that came from.
”It was right in our hands, and we let it get away. Maybe on the tying goal, it was a play, but we can’t give up that play. That’s a goal that can’t happen, and they got some momentum off it. From there, we weren’t very good.”
Stars backup Richard Bachman made 26 stops in his first start since Feb. 2, a stretch of 11 games.
”I think we were lucky to get out of the second (period), Richard Bachman certainly kept us in it,” Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said. ”Our leadership group took a stand between the second and third and we got going.”
Marian Hossa scored Chicago’s lone goal, and Corey Crawford made 22 saves.
As expected, Blackhawks captain and leading goal scorer Jonathan Toews missed his second game because of an undisclosed upper body injury. Chicago defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson returned to the lineup after missing seven games with a concussion.
Toews also was involved in an automobile accident on the way to the United Center on Thursday morning. According to Chicago police, the Blackhawks center struck the support pillar of an elevated rapid transit rail line as he made a turn in his Mercedes.
The police report said Toews wasn’t injured, and no citations were issued. The team called the accident a ”minor one” and said Toews wasn’t injured in it.
While the Blackhawks have shored up their defense, their power-play continues to sputter. They failed to convert the only man advantage of the game and are 0 for 33.
Neither team had many prime opportunities or sustained pressure in the scoreless first period. Crawford stopped Adam Burish on a short-handed breakaway 4:50 in as the Blackhawks struggled on the lone power play.
Hossa opened the scoring 9:32 into the second. After jumping on a turnover behind the Dallas net, Michael Frolik plowed to the front, but lost control of the puck. It squirted to Hossa, who fired in his 24th goal over Bachman’s blocker.
Following a botched Chicago clearing attempt, Ott tied it at 9:25 of the third on a deflection of Trevor Daley’s shot from the point. Ott, parked just above the hash marks, redirected the puck past Crawford on the stick side while Ryan Garbutt cruised through the crease.
Ryder and Eriksson connected 1:14 apart to give the Stars their second straight win.
”We had a couple of costly turnovers,” Chicago forward Jamal Mayers said. ”When they get that first one, obviously we need to stay the course and, for whatever reason, we seemed to get away from our game.
”I don’t pay attention necessarily to the shot count, but clearly we didn’t manage the puck well in the third. As a result we lose the game.”
NOTES: Blackhawks D Steve Montador missed his eighth game because of an upper body injury. … Dallas D Sheldon Souray returned after missing seven games with a bruised foot. Burish came back after missing one due to an illness. … Stars C Jamie Benn (leg) missed his fourth game. C Jake Dowell sat out his first (broken finger).