RECAP: Blackhawks unable to weather early storm in 6–3 loss at Carolina


Following Saturday’s 3–2 win over Ottawa, the Chicago Blackhawks looked to win their second straight game on Monday night against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Hawks received some reinforcements up front as they welcomed Anthony Beauvillier back into the lineup for the first time since Jan. 2 following a wrist injury. The Hawks started former Hurricane netminder Petr Mrazek in goal against Carolina’s Spencer Martin.

First period

The Hurricanes jumped out to a 1–0 lead at 11:45 of the first when Michael Bunting scored his 13th of the season. Martin Necas stickhandled behind the net and dished to a wide-open Bunting, who backhanded a shot past Mrazek, who had made several strong saves to open the contest. The Canes held the one-goal lead through 20 minutes as they controlled play for the first period, outshooting the Hawks 15–5.

Second period

Less than two minutes into the second period, Necas skated through both Hawks defensemen and lifted a backhander past his good friend Mrazek to give Carolina a 2–0 lead. For Necas, it was his 17th of the season at the 1:59 mark.

The Hurricanes’ dominance continued when Jesperi Kotkaniemi scored his 10th of the season at 8:22. With the Canes buzzing around the Hawks zone, Dmitry Orlov fired a cross-ice pass to Kotkaniemi, who sniped a wrist shot from the left circle into the corner of the net to give Carolina a 3–0 lead.

Sebastian Aho stretched the Hurricanes’ lead to 4–0 with his 20th goal of the season. Andrei Svechnikov dished to Aho, who skated behind the net and came back out to the left of Mrazek and snapped a wrist shot to the far corner at 10:52 of the second period. At this point, the Canes were outshooting the Hawks 27–7.

The Hawks finally scratched the scoresheet when Connor Bedard beat two Canes defenders to the puck along the boards and fed Nick Foligno in the right circle. Despite being well covered, Foligno spun around and fired a hard backhand shot past Martin to cut the deficit to 4–1 at 15:23. That would be the score through two with Carolina dominating shots on goal, 31–9.

Third period

At 2:34 of the third, Brent Burns scored a power play goal to give Carolina a 5–1 lead. Aho’s point shot was stopped by Mrazek, but the puck went to the right of the Hawks goaltender and on to the stick of Burns, who scored his ninth of the season.

The Hawks thought they cut the deficit to 5–2 on a goal by Bedard, but after review, it was determined that Hawks defensemen Louis Crevier pulled the puck out of the zone prior to the goal being scored. This was Bedard’s third overturned goal of the season and second since making his return to the lineup last week.

A few minutes later, Bedard scored a goal that would count and would be his 17th of the season. Tyler Johnson skated the puck into the Canes’ zone and behind the net. Johnson fed Philipp Kurashev, who gave a no-look feed to a wide-open Bedard to tap it in on the power play to cut it to 5–2 at the 7:00 mark.

The Hawks cut it to 5–3 with a power play goal from Johnson. The Hawks controlled the puck in the Carolina zone. From the right circle, Bedard snapped the puck in front to Johnson, who had inside positioning and tipped it past Martin for his 11th of the season at 9:08 of the third.

With the Hawks’ net empty, Jordan Staal won a neutral zone draw that was gathered by Seth Jarvis, who fed Jordan Martinook, who lofted the puck from center ice into the net for his 10th of the season at 18:11. Carolina led 6–3 and that was the final.


The Blackhawks started slow and it would continue through the first 50 minutes of the game as the deeper and more talented Hurricanes pinned the Hawks in their zone and flat out dominated from the opening draw. Mrazek did all he could early to keep the Hawks in the game but it was not enough, especially with the Hawks unable to generate many scoring chances. On the positive side, the Hawks generated two power play goals, as Bedard continued his strong play with a three-point night, giving him two goals and six points in three games since he returned from injury.

The Blackhawks return home on Wednesday night for the first of a five-game homestand when they host the Philadelphia Flyers. Puck drop is at 6:30 p.m. CST with a nationally televised broadcast on TNT and the radio call on WGN 720 AM.


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