The Chicago Blackhawks suffered a 2-1 overtime loss to the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday night. It was a near-repeat of the matchup exactly a week ago, but Los Angeles came out on top in extra time in this one. Here's how the action unfolded.
First Period: Blackhawks PP Breaks The Ice
After a fairly dull stretch to begin the game, special teams spiced things up nearly halfway through the first. The Blackhawks and Kings exchanged power plays that resulted from tripping penalties, but neither side converted the first time around.
Then, the Blackhawks broke through with just over a minute remaining in the opening frame. With LA's Rasmus Kupari in the box for a hooking infraction, Taylor Raddysh buried a feed from Jonathan Toews to put the visitors up 1-0.
However, Reese Johnson took a roughing penalty with 22 seconds remaining in the period to give the Kings their second power play of the game.
Second Period: Kings Answer Back
While the Kings didn't convert on the man advantage that carried over to the second period, it helped them set up their first tally of the game. Just as Reese Johnson exited the penalty box, former Blackhawks forward Phillip Danault blasted a one-timer over Petr Mrazek's glove to even the score.
The special-teams theme continued when Kevin Fiala committed a hooking penalty to give the Blackhawks their third power play of the contest. Despite multiple looks right on the doorstep, the visitors couldn't convert as Jonathan Quick held strong in his crease.
Brendan Lemieux continued the Kings' parade to the penalty box with a tripping infraction at the 10:17 mark of the middle frame. But once again, the Blackhawks couldn't convert and the score remained 1-1, which held into the second intermission.
Third Period: Petr Mrazek Holds Strong
The Blackhawks opened the third period with a pair of strong penalty kills after infractions by Jack Johnson and Caleb Jones within the first five minutes.
The Kings continued to press for most of the final regulation frame and held an 11-2 scoring chance advantage. But some outstanding work by Petr Mrazek in goal helped the Blackhawks pick up a point and head to overtime.
Overtime: An LA Buzzer-Beater
Mrazek continued his strong play by turning away a flurry of Kings' chances to begin the overtime period.
Max Domi and Jonathan Toews responded with a rush of their own that generated four solid looks, but Jonathan Quick, like Mrazek, was up to the task.
However, the dam finally broke when Kevin Fiala potted the game-winning goal off a feed from Phillip Danault with 1.4 seconds left on the clock.
The Blackhawks dropped to 5-5-3 while the Kings improved to 9-6-1 on the season.
Petr Mrazek had an excellent outing in goal following an eight-game absence due to a groin injury. He stopped 33 of 35 shots, including six while shorthanded, to keep the Blackhawks in a game they had no business being in.
Milestone watch: Jonathan Toews recorded his 498th career assist with a primary helper on Taylor Raddysh's first-period power-play goal.
The Kings hemmed the Blackhawks in their defensive zone at the end of the second period, resulting in ridiculously lengthy shifts for Caleb Jones (3:58) and Alec Regula (4:11). Get those defensemen some oxygen tanks STAT.
Luke Richardson shuffled his lines in the second period. Philipp Kurashev moved up to the first line with Patrick Kane and Max Domi while Andreas Athanasiou joined the second group with Jonathan Toews and Taylor Raddysh. It didn't result in any scoring, but the tweaks will be an interesting development to keep an eye on moving forward.
What's On Tap Next?
The Chicago Blackhawks will stay on the West Coast for a date with the Anaheim Ducks on Saturday. They'll visit a well-rested Ducks team that will be looking to right their early season woes that have resulted in a 4-9-1 start. Puck drop is at 9:00 PM CT and the game will air on NBC Sports Chicago.
Tune in to the Four Feathers Podcast for further Blackhawks commentary all season.