In today's game against the Dallas Stars, Nick Seeler was scratched, along with Erik Gustafsson, who is heavily rumored to be involved in a trade before the deadline hits on Monday the 24th. With Seeler scratched, young defenseman Lucas Carlsson made his NHL debut after being re-called on Saturday.
This important Western Conference game began with the Dallas Stars having multiple scoring chances early on. Goaltender Corey Crawford made several stops that easily could have gone in, thanks to some miscues in the defensive zone.
After a defensive-breakdown at 15:20, Joe Pavelski opened up the scoring by lifting one right over the glove of Crawford.
The former San Jose Shark has not had the same offensive production he endured in California, but has double-digit goals for the Stars. If there was one skater you don't want to lose track of or underestimate, it's him:
John Klingberg was caught tripping and sent to the penalty-box with just under three minutes to play in the opening frame. The Blackhawks had plenty of chances on this power-play, trying to build on the momentum created Friday night against Nashville, but they could not bury one past Stars' goaltender Anton Khudobin. The Stars out-shot the Hawks 12-10 and the period ended 1-0 in favor of Dallas.
At 5:06 into the second, Radek Faksa interfered with Adam Boqvist, sending the Hawks to the power play. Four seconds into the power play, the Hawks scored but the goal was negated due to an extremely questionable interference call on Jonathan Toews.
During the 4-on-4, Alex DeBrincat went down hard and Stars' Roope Hintz was sent to the box. A 4-on-3 man advantage in favor of the Hawks ensued afterwards.
This power play came through for the Hawks as Dominik Kubalik banged his 26th goal of the year past Khudobin after a very nice setup from Patrick Kane, who extends his point streak to five games.
Later in the period, Alexander Radulov spent two minutes in the penalty-box for a slash on Brandon Saad. The Hawks did not score, but after a few minutes, they were rewarded another power play when Jamie Oleksiak interfered with Kubalik. Unfortunately, the Hawks could not capitalize on that chance either.
With 3:32 left in the second period, Corey Crawford slipped going to his right and Tyler Seguin had a wide open shot. He buried it past Crawford and the Stars lead 2-1.
A minute later, Duncan Keith hooked Mattias Janmark on a breakaway giving him a penalty-shot. Crawford did his job and made a potential game-saving stop.
The period would go on to end in dull fashion with Dallas in the lead, 2-1.
That would end up being the final score in spite of a tremendous effort by the Blackhawks. They had plenty of chances including a very exciting final minute with an empty-net. They just could not figure out Khudobin, who played a phenomenal game.
It was very encouraging to see the young Lucas Carlsson playing almost fifteen minutes in his NHL debut and also getting deep into the offensive plays, trying his best to create something:
Arguably, Corey Crawford was the best player on the ice for the Blackhawks today. He had 31 saves on 33 shots for a .939 save percentage. The Blackhawks went 1-for-5 on the man advantage and could not capitalize on the sloppy play of the Stars. They missed out on the much-needed two points in the standings and have a tough road game against the Blues on Tuesday night.