Kane, Dach lead Blackhawks past Sabres 4-1
The lanky Dach and shifty Kane are two very different forwards, but there is something about Dach that Kane remembers from when he broke into the NHL.
“The confidence coming in at 18 to be able to just know that you’re a good hockey player,” Kane said, “and maybe that’s a little bit of what I see that we have some similarity.”
Kane and Dach led the way as the high-scoring Blackhawks beat the Buffalo Sabres 4-1 for their fourth straight victory.
“Each game I’m getting better,” Dach said. “I’m pushing myself to strive to be better.”
Kane won a battle with Buffalo defenseman Marco Scandella for a loose puck during a third-period power play, and then beat Carter Hutton on the glove side for his team-best 11th goal. The star forward has eight goals and nine assists during a nine-game point streak.
Jack Eichel scored his fifth goal in two days, but banged-up Buffalo lost for the seventh time in eight games. Eichel had four goals in the Sabres’ 4-2 victory over Ottawa on Saturday.
“Their chances were probably better than ours and, you know, we just didn’t play a good game,” Eichel said.
Buffalo played without forward Kyle Okposo, who left the win against the Senators with a possible head injury. Okposo accidentally collided with Senators defenseman Ron Hainsey after he got on the ice for a line change.
“It’s the type of injury that just needs a little space,” coach Ralph Krueger said. “We’ll know more for sure by tomorrow.”
Okposo was sidelined for part of last season after he was diagnosed with his third concussion in less than three years.
Dach, the No. 3 overall pick in the June draft, got each of his goals on the backhand side, extending his point streak to four games.
Dach’s shot from the left circle in the first went off the stick of a backchecking Eichel and fluttered over Hutton. He made it 2-0 in the second when he flipped a slick backhand into the net at 12:32 for his fifth goal in 14 games this season.
“He’s getting more comfortable with the league and he’s improving all the time,” coach Jeremy Colliton said. “He looks very under control out there and he makes plays.”
Krueger was impressed.
“It’s the first time I’ve seen him that close. He’s going to be an exciting player to watch in this league,” he said.
NOTES: F Tage Thompson made his season debut for Buffalo, replacing Okposo in the lineup. Thompson was recalled from Rochester of the AHL. … Crawford improved to 11-0-0 against the Sabres for his career. … D Henri Jokiharju was back in Chicago after he was traded to Buffalo in July for F Alex Nylander. The 20-year-old Jokiharju was selected by the Blackhawks in the first round of the 2017 draft, but he fell out of favor with the club after Colliton took over last season. “I think it’s a little bit how the coach sees you as a player and as a person,” Jokiharju said, “so I think that was one of the issues in here.” … Blackhawks D Brent Seabrook skated in his 1,100th NHL game.
Sabres: Host the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday night.
Blackhawks: Host the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday night.