RECAP: Kings Snap Streak, Beat Blackhawks 6-3


The Blackhawks left Anaheim after Wednesday night’s win and commuted north to Los Angeles to take on the Kings in a Saturday matinee at STAPLES Center.

The Blackhawks were hoping to build off of their last minute win in Anaheim on Wednesday as they took on the bottom-dwelling Kings. With Drake Caggiula down, Brendan Perlini drew in for his first game after four straight games as a scratch. Corey Crawford also started his second straight game since returning from the IR. The lines were as follows:










First Period:

The game did not begin well for the Blackhawks. A careless too many men penalty sent the Kings to the power play. Soon after going on the power play, a charging Dustin Brown scored on a quality chance to make it 1-0.

A minute later, it was deja vu for the Blackhawks. Dylan Strome tripped Jeff Carter at center ice to give the Kings yet another power play. Late in the man advantage, Adrian Kempe made a beautiful dish back to Sean Walker. Walker ripped a wrist shot that found the twine. Crawford was completely screened on the play by numerous players, so he stood no chance to make the save.

Just after the midway point of the period, the Blackhawks received their first opportunity on the man advantage. Despite three really good looks for Patrick Kane, the Blackhawks were shut down by Jonathan Quick and the rest of the Kings’ penalty kill.

The Kings however continued to dominate the period. With just under five minutes remaining, Jeff Carter walked up the right wing wall from down low and made a quick pass to Ilya Kovalchuk near the blue line. Kovalchuk fired the puck on net with no hesitation and beat Crawford for his 14th of the season.

However, the first period wasn’t all bad, despite the horrific first 18+ minutes. With a little different look to the lines, Dylan Strome found Slater Koekkoek at the point with a pass from below the goal line. After receiving the puck, Koekkoek fed Brendan Perlini in the high-slot and Perlini buried the one-timer to give the Blackhawks a sliver of hope heading into intermission. The score was 3-1 Kings after one period.

Second Period:

After a miserable first period, the Blackhawks came out of the intermission with some momentum. As the Kings’ defense went for a change, Crawford found a breaking Perlini with a nice feed. Perlini had a breakaway from the blue line in and beat Quick for his second goal of the day and to make it a 3-2 score.

It was easy to tell the Blackhawks were controlling play. With about 13 minutes remaining, Gustav Forsling avoided a check and got the puck to Chris Kunitz. Kunitz found Connor Murphy through the neutral zone with momentum. As soon as Murphy skated over the blue line, he ripped a frozen rope, top shelf on Quick to tie the game at three.

Just when the Blackhawks felt good about tying the game, a 2-on-1 rush by the Kings ended with Kempe going top shelf on Crawford giving LA the 4-3 lead. The goal came just over a minute after Murphy’s tally. Erik Gustafsson was caught down low on the play, resulting in the 2-on-1 opportunity for the home team.

With about three minutes left in the period, the Blackhawks were given their second power play of the day after Murphy was boarded by Tyler Toffoli. The Blackhawks were able to move the puck well, but could not get a clean look at the net. The visitors could not take advantage of the opportunity.

As the Kings’ penalty expired, Tyler Toffoli had a breakaway from the blue line in and as he shot the puck, his stick broke. The Blackhawks dodged a late bullet and went into the dressing room with the score 4-3 after two periods.

Third Period:

The early part of the final frame was dictated by high-paced back-and-forth action. However, the Kings made it a two goal lead after Brendan Leipsic hammered home his 6th goal of the season. It would have been a tough save for Crawford on a shot that should have been a rocket, but came in as a changeup and just slipped in under the crossbar.

The fifth goal for the Kings deflated the Blackhawks. Their earlier energy disappeared and the Kings did just enough to keep the Blackhawks from regaining that momentum.

With under two minutes remaining, the Kings would strike again. After a Duncan Keith turnover, Anze Kopitar setup Dustin Brown in the slot. Brown ripped a shot top-shelf on Crawford for his second goal of the day.

Despite a few chances for the Blackhawks in the third, they could not solve Quick. The Kings captured their first win after ten-straight losses and beat the Blackhawks, 6-3.

Quick Hits:

  • The Early Bird Gets the Worm: The Blackhawks came out flat in the first period and it really showed. The Kings jumped out to a 3-0 lead early and, although the Blackhawks tied it, they were playing from behind the whole time, only to fall 6-3. Not a good look against the worst team in the West.
  • Missing Caggiula: Drake Caggiula’s presence was missed in this game. Not only his energy that he brings playing with Toews and Kane, but his absence threw the chemistry of the lines off for the whole game. 
  • Playoffs?: The Blackhawks’ loss critically affects their chance at the playoffs. The Blackhawks are five points out with three teams to jump for the final wild card spot. Arizona has been playing well, and the Stars and Wild are still holding on, further complicating the Blackhawks path to a playoff spot.


The Blackhawks return to action on Sunday, March 3rd as they head to San Jose to take on the Sharks. Puck drop is at 9:00pm CST.


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