The Chicago Blackhawks entered Saturday night's contest with the Seattle Kraken on an impressive three-game winning streak. Fresh off of stringing together victories against the Coyotes, Flames, and defending Stanley Cup Champion Avalanche, despite missing Patrick Kane, the Hawks were playing some of their best hockey since the start of the 2022-23 season.
Patrick Kane returned to the lineup after missing the prior three contests with an undisclosed lower-body injury. The Blackhawks of the past week, however, were nowhere to be found on the ice tonight in front of the home crowd.
The Kraken got off to a ferocious start in the first period. After Seattle struck first, Jonathan Toews managed to add an early tally to tie the score at 1-1 giving Blackhawks fans early some early hope.
That would be all the offense the Blackhawks could muster in the first before an onslaught ensued via the Kraken offense. Seattle proceeded to send Blackhawks starting goaltender Petr Mrazek packing early after just 12:57 of play by scoring four goals in their first five shots of the game.
Blackhawks head coach Luke Richardson turned to Alex Stalock in an attempt to change the tides. Despite the move, the Kraken onslaught continued as Eeli Tolvanen scored just 37 seconds following the the change. Richardson then called an early timeout in a further effort to get his team right but his efforts to change the tide were for naught.
Jared McCann scored just seconds after play resumed giving Seattle a 6-1 lead. The Kraken scored five goals in a matter of just 3:41. The feat ranks the 15th fastest five goals by any team in NHL history, according to NHL Stats.
After an embarrassing first, the Blackhawks fared much better during the second period. Chicago managed to keep the Kraken off the scoresheet and add a tally of their own. Former fifth-round draft pick Isaak Phillips found the back of the net, scoring his first career NHL goal to make the score 6-2. Fellow defenseman Jason Dickinson recorded his seventh assist on the season while tying his 2021-22 point total of 11 in the process.
That would be all of the scoring action from either team during the second period. Despite early struggles, Alex Stalock settled into the net and looked formidable during the second period of play.
The Blackhawks opened the third period of play on the powerplay thanks to Justin Schultz interfering with Reese Johnson late in the third. Max Domi took advantage of the opportunity bringing the score to 6-3 offering a small glimmer of hope for a Blackhawks comeback.
One minute later Jared McCann potted his third goal of the night to secure a hattrick and a 7-3 lead for the Kraken. Oliver Bjorkstrand quickly followed suit in finding twine bringing the score to 8-3 just 41 seconds later.
The Blackhawks managed to make the score respectable late as Taylor Raddysh scored his 12th goal of the season. Patrick Kane also scored his eighth goal of the season with just seconds left of the third to bring the final score to 8-5.
Following the game, Blackhawks head coach Luke Richardson seemed less than happy with the overall effort of his team. "Nobody was prepared to play today, physically and mentally," Richardson said as he spoke to the media following the loss.
Max Domi also had some words about how things went wrong the for Blackhawks tonight.
What's On Tap Next for the Chicago Blackhawks
The Chicago Blackhawks will face off next against the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday, January 17, 2023. A 7:30 CST start will be televised on NBC Sports Chicago.