The Blackhawks score five unanswered goals to come back and beat Ottawa after weather delays arrival to the arena.
The Chicago Blackhawks traveled to Ottawa for their third preseason game Friday night, and their first of two games against the Senators. Chicago sent a largely suspect roster on this trip with 11 players having never played in an NHL game before. The Blackhawks took a while to find their feet, but won an exciting matchup against the Senators 5-2 with goals from Andreas Martinsen, Marcus Kruger, Luke Johnson, John Hayden and Dominik Kahun.
First Period – The Blackhawks got off to an extremely slow start, not getting a shot on net until 10 minutes into the first period. While Ottawa came out blazing with Alex Formenton burying a breakaway goal 5-hole, and Matt Duchene chipping a rebound over the leg of Rockford playoff hero Collin Delia due to some poor net-front defense. Just 12 minutes into the game, Ottawa had jumped to a 2-0 lead.
Late in the first period and on a Blackhawks powerplay, former 5th round pick Luke Johnson ripped a one-timer from the high slot off a feed from Dylan Sikura to finally put the Hawks on the scoresheet, 2-1 Ottawa.
Despite being outshot 14-6 the Blackhawks survived the first period down only 2-1.
Second Period – Goalie Collin Delia really owned the start of the second period making an unbelievable pad save sliding across the crease to rob Burgdoerfer and a great glove save on Matt Duchene to keep the Hawks in the game.
Just over 12 minutes into the second period, Luc Snuggarud’s long shot from the Sens blue line was redirected off players in front of the net right to undrafted forward Dominik Kahun who roofed the opportunity on Mike Condon to even up the score 2-2.
Following the Blackhawks goal the teams switched netminders. Matt Tompkins finished the period in goal for the Blackhawks while Filip Gustavsson took over for the Sens.
The Hawks did a great job dictating the play in the second period outshooting the Sens 12-5.
Third Period – The Hawks got off to a great start with Andreas Martinsen coming out of the penalty box with a great pass to Marcus Kruger which he buried to put the Blackhawks up 3-2. Not long after the Kruger goal, the duo was at it again but this time it was Martinsen sending a wrister past Gustavsson on a feed from Kruger to extend the Hawks lead 4-2.
Just before the 13 minute mark of the period, the goal frenzy continued with John Hayden getting a quick shot off a great no look feed behind the net from Dominik Kahun to give us our final score of 5-2.
Final Thoughts – Although only playing half the game. Collin Delia was the difference maker in this game. Delia only allowed two goals but the Senators easily could have easily jumped out to a 5-0 lead if he had not been so good this game. Making highlight reel saves left and right tonight, he was truly the star of the show finishing with 17 saves on 19 shots. Matt Tompkins did his part, as well, saving all 7 shots he faced.
The penalty kill stopped 5/6 opportunities and looked stronger as the game went on. On the flip side, giving up six powerplay opportunities on sloppy stick offenses is no way to help secure a roster spot for these bubble players.
Friday’s game marked the first time that two brothers suited up in the same game for the Blackhawks since Jonathan and David Toews did, almost exactly seven years ago.
The Blackhawks are back at home at the United Center for their preseason home opener Tuesday night against the Detroit Red Wings at 7:30 Central.