The Chicago Blackhawks rolled into Southern Florida with more than just talent issues. Goalie Alex Stalock was out with a non-COVID-related illness and they needed to sign Florida Panthers emergency back-up goaltender Zach Andrews (no relation to our very own Eric Andrews) to a one-day amateur tryout contract to have enough goaltenders to be roster compliant.
Chicago jumped out to a 2–0 lead in the first period, but gave up three goals in a five-minute span of the third period to head into the final seven minutes of play down 3–2. The temporary hero of the night was Cole Guttman, who scored the game-tying goal with under a minute left in regulation. Florida, however, took the extra point on a goal by defenseman Brandon Montour halfway through overtime.
🏒 The Blackhawks were out-shot 43–24 and 34–17 in the final two periods and overtime. No one can compete when they are getting crushed in their own end this way. That said, goaltender Petr Mrazek held the Blackhawks in the game. Posting 39 saves last night is respectable.
🏒 Recent Blackhawks acquisition Anders Bjork was injured in the first period and did not return.
— Charlie Roumeliotis (@CRoumeliotis) March 11, 2023
🏒 The Jones brothers played 28:09 (Seth) and 24:23 (Caleb), which is way too much for those two. Head coach Luke Richardson is (almost) getting his money’s worth.
🐆 The Panthers’ goals were from Sam Bennett, Sam Reinhart and Eetu Luostarinen, with the “Sam” goals coming just 29 seconds apart.
🐆 The Panthers also took 22 minutes in penalties, giving the Blackhawks six power plays. Of course, the visitors failed to score on any of the aforementioned advantages.
🏒 Not only were the Blackhawks missing Stalock and eventually Bjork, but Connor Murphy was also unavailable as he tended to family back in Chicago. Murphy will again be out of the lineup on Saturday.
For those watching the “tank index,” Chicago is currently ranked 30th overall with a .385 points percentage ahead of the San Jose Sharks (.379) and Columbus Blue Jackets (.367). The Blackhawks travel across the state of Florida to face the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday. Puck drop is at 6 p.m. CST.