Blackhawks 6, Ducks 5
The Chicago Blackhawks began the third period with such fury,
the Anaheim Ducks didn’t know what hit them. And if they don’t make
the playoffs, the floundering Ducks will look back at this
experience as ”Black Friday” in more ways than one.
Patrick Sharp scored the tying and go-ahead goals in a 2:01 span
early in the third to complete his second career hat trick, and the
gritty Blackhawks rallied for a 6-5 victory.
”We were down early on, but we felt really good about the way
we were playing and we were playing that team-first game,” Sharp
said. ”Our offense hasn’t been scoring goals like we did today in
the third period, but the philosophy of the team game is there –
and that is the biggest thing. We stuck with it and we were able to
get a win.”
Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews had two goals and three
assists, helping Chicago end a three-game skid and send the
demoralized Ducks to their sixth straight loss. Dave Bolland also
scored, and Duncan Keith and Viktor Stalberg each had two
”It’s a big win for us because of how things have been going
lately,” Toews said. ”Over the last couple of games we’ve come up
short, but we’ve worked hard. Today we were all over the place
getting chances, and we knew the breaks would come. I feel like we
are over the hump, but we’ve got to carry that into tomorrow’s
Anaheim’s Bobby Ryan scored twice to end an eight-game goal
drought. Teemu Selanne had a power-play goal and an assist, and
Andrew Cogliano and Corey Perry also scored. Jonas Hiller made 17
of his 28 saves in the second period before the Blackhawks drove
him to the bench trailing 5-4 with 16:27 remaining.
”It was tough. We came out with the energy we wanted and got
the lead, but we didn’t finish the game the way we wanted,” Ducks
captain Ryan Getzlaf said. ”I’m very concerned. It’s not something
we’re willing to accept around here. We’ve got to change the
mentality at the start of every period, treat it like it’s
zero-zero and learn how to win those kind of games.”
Trailing 4-2, the Blackhawks began their four-goal third-period
spree just 1:04 after the intermission when Keith took a long slap
shot that ricocheted off Toews’ foot and hit the left post before
Moments later, Getzlaf overskated the puck behind his net and
the forechecking Toews set up Sharp in front for the equalizer,
causing Getzlaf to break his stick over the net in frustration.
”I went behind the net and tried to make the play off the wall,
but the puck kind of jumped my stick for a second, and he just
wrapped it in front real quick,” Getzlaf said. ”It’s my
responsibility to be a little harder on that puck and not let that
The Blackhawks took their first lead just 1:01 later, as Sharp
beat Hiller to the stick side with a wrist shot from the top of the
left circle for his third goal of the game and ninth this
Dan Ellis replaced Hiller and gave up Toews’ second goal and
12th of the campaign with 10:38 to play, putting Chicago ahead 6-4
while Saku Koivu was off for holding Marian Hossa. Toews had an
easy tap-in after Ellis stopped Keith’s wrist shot and let the puck
trickle behind him into the crease.
”In the third period, it was like we froze and didn’t want the
puck,” Ducks coach Randy Carlyle said. ”That leads to more
defensive-zone play and more penalties – totally undisciplined
penalties at critical times, like Saku Koivu in the offensive zone.
Right now we’re finding ways to lose hockey games when we’re in a
prime position to win them. It’s very frustrating and very
confusing for everybody involved.”
Trailing 2-0 on goals by Ryan and Cogliano in the first 2:13,
Chicago got on the board at 6:09 of the opening period on Sharp’s
goal on the Blackhawks’ first shot on net – just 24 seconds after
they killed off a holding penalty against Toews.
Selanne restored Anaheim’s two-goal lead at 14:56 of the first
on a power play. But Bolland narrowed the gap to 3-2 the next time
Chicago had the man advantage, capitalizing on Francois
Beauchemin’s tripping penalty.
”We stopped playing the body, we stopped playing hard and let
them back in the game,” Hiller said. ”It’s tough to lose like
that, when you give up three goals in the first few minutes of the
third. I’m speechless. It seemed almost like we were afraid to
lose. We came out of the second with the lead, but I don’t think we
had a really good period and gave them a lot of chances.”
The Blackhawks outshot Anaheim 17-5 in the second – not counting
the short wrist shot by rookie Marcus Kruger that rang off the
right post with 1:07 left in the period. But Ryan had the only
goal, converting a pass from Luca Sbisa at the 8:41 mark.
”That’s a dangerous team. And if you leave a few guys open,
they are going to find plays and make you pay for it,” Toews said.
”We don’t want to get down two goals to a team like that anymore.
We have to make sure we are smart early in games.”
Ryan was the best player on the ice for the Ducks despite the
fact that he played with a bruised hip, a souvenir of Wednesday’s
4-2 loss at Phoenix.
”There are certain situations where it just don’t feel right,”
Ryan said. ”The doctors have taken good care of me the past two
days and I felt ready to play – and it obviously showed. I mean,
there was a little wear and tear on it through the game, but I was
Notes: This was the fourth straight year that the Blackhawks
played at Anaheim on the day after Thanksgiving. Chicago lost the
first two 1-0 and 3-0, then beat the Ducks 4-1 last year… Getzlaf
has gone 13 straight games without a goal, his longest drought in
seven NHL seasons. … Chicago D Brent Seabrook returned to the
lineup after missing four games because of an injured left leg. It
was the longest stretch he sat out since his 2005-06 rookie season,
when he missed 13 straight because of a sprained left knee.