Blackhawks Post-game One-timers — Oct. 10 at Pittsburgh Penguins


Well, we finally made it, folks! Game one of the 2023–24 hockey season, with the Chicago Blackhawks taking on the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh. With both teams looking to improve on last season’s disappointments, and Connor Bedard looking to make his mark on the NHL, let’s check out the lineups for both teams:

The first period started off with lots of excitement. Bedard centered the opening line, with Taylor Hall and Ryan Donato on his wings, and began his career with a face-off against his idol, Sidney Crosby.

The Blackhawks got the first power play of the game, and were able to generate plenty of chances, but it did not amount to a goal in the early going. However, just after the penalty expired, the Penguins took the puck back up ice, with Kris Letang putting the puck on net, deflecting off of Bryan Rust and over the shoulder of Petr Mrazek, making the score 1–0 Penguins.

Both Mrazek and Tristan Jarry made some big stops in the period to keep the score 1–0 going into the second.

The second was also a flurry of activity around both nets. Mrazek made some spectacular saves to keep the game close in the early going. With just over eight minutes left in the second, the Penguins put another goal past Mrazek, but the Blackhawks challenged the goal, with the puck appearing to possibly go outside of the zone. Unfortunately, the league did not see things that way, and the Penguins went up 2–0, getting a power play out of the situation as well with the delay of game penalty against the Blackhawks.

With just under four and a half minutes left in the frame, Bedard and Alex Vlasic worked a give-and-go down the boards, with Vlasic putting a wrister on net from the left circle, and Donato backhanding the puck past Jarry, making it 2–1 Penguins to end the second. Bedard’s assist on the play would be his first NHL point.

In the third, the Blackhawks came roaring back in a way that we did not often see last year. The first 10 minutes traded chances once again, but with just under 10 minutes remaining in the period, Seth Jones picked up a rebound off of an Andreas Athanasiou shot and passed it to Cole Guttman just inside the right circle, who wristed it past Jarry to knot the game up at 2–2.

With just over four and a half to go, the veteran line of Jason Dickinson, Nick Foligno and Corey Perry got in on the action. Foligno skated up the left side wall, dropping a pass to Perry for a shot that deflected right in front to Dickinson, who dove to put the puck past Jarry and give the Blackhawks a 3–2 lead. They would later extend that on another goal from that line, with Perry passing it to Foligno, who potted it into the empty net to put this one to bed for a 4–2 Blackhawks comeback win!


Watching this game, you would have thought that this team was a playoff team last season. They showed resilience that they did not show much of at all last season, which was such a refreshing change to see after only winning 26 games last season. This game likely will not be the result every night this season, but this team already looks like it wants to play hard to grind out more wins this year. Bedard was not shy about shooting the puck, but just needs to improve his timing, which will come. This Blackhawks team is fun to watch, with lots of speed, and more grit. Jones in particular stood out in this game. He was looking a lot more like a guy who is worth closer to his salary instead of the salary cap paperweight he looked like at times last season. Though just a one-game sample size, Wyatt Kaiser and Kevin Korchinski looked overwhelmed frequently throughout the night and Lukas Reichel was largely invisible in the game except for one rush in the third period. Seeing how Kaiser and Korchinski perform in the coming games will be crucial in determining if they are truly ready for prime time or if they would be better suited to gain more developmental time.

The Blackhawks’ next game is Wednesday night against the Boston Bruins. Coverage will be on TNT at 6:30 p.m. CDT.


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