The Chicago Blackhawks came into Friday night’s action against the New York Rangers looking to break a losing skid. Going back to before the all-star break, they had dropped their previous five games. Their opponents had also outscored them 14–3, and they needed to find offense badly to get back on track.
Louis Crevier was in the lineup for Jarred Tinordi, and Rem Pitlick swapped into Zach Sanford’s spot on the forward lines.
The Blackhawks got off to a good start in this game. They got a lot of good chances early on, with one paying off. Boris Katchouk got the puck and tried to pass it to Taylor Raddysh. The Rangers swatted the puck away on the pass, but it went right to Alex Vlasic. He buried a wrister past Igor Shesterkin, giving the Blackhawks a 1–0 lead early. Just a couple minutes later, though, the Rangers would answer. On a beautiful passing play, the puck would find its way to Alexis Lafreniere, who knotted things up at 1–1. A minute and a half later, the Blackhawks were effectively down a man due to a missing skate blade, and with bodies flying all over the ice, Chris Kreider got a tap-in to make it 2–1 New York. The period ended with the Blackhawks trailing 2–1.
After both teams traded good chances, halfway through the period, the Rangers would get another. They skated the puck in on Petr Mrazek, who made the initial save on a bad-angle shot. The puck sat right next to him, thought, and Jonny Brodzinski was able to put it home to make it 3–1 Rangers.
The Blackhawks did not give up on this game. It took until the 13:37 mark of the third for them to put another goal in the net, but they managed to do so. After a battle out in front, Nick Foligno got the puck right off of Shesterkin’s pad and put the puck past him to make the game 3–2. Then, with just over a minute left in the game, Jason Dickinson tipped a Seth Jones shot in front of the net past the Rangers’ goaltender, tying things up at 3–3 to send the game to overtime.
THE BLACKHAWKS TIE IT WITH A MINUTE LEFT 😱 pic.twitter.com/6auuJKfJY4
— B/R Open Ice (@BR_OpenIce) February 10, 2024
Unfortunately, the Blackhawks could not keep the momentum going into the overtime period. It was mostly good chances for the Rangers, and Mika Zibanejad would win it for the visitors. On a 3-on-2 opportunity, he put the puck up high over Mrazek’s shoulder to give the Rangers the 4–3 victory.
The Blackhawks looked better in this game, as they actually continued to fight back, and managed to find their offense in the process. That is what has been missing the most on this losing streak, so it was good to see it come back. I wish this team had more secondary scoring, but they simply do not, as it was Foligno and Dickinson who came up with the final goals to send the game to overtime. Hopefully the offense will continue to come through moving on here, as this team can definitely fight against the best of them, as they proved on Friday.
The Blackhawks’ next game will be on Tuesday night against the Vancouver Canucks. That game will be at 7:30 p.m. CST on NBC Sports Chicago.