It was a wild night in the Windy City as the Chicago Blackhawks hung on for an 8-7 win against the Ottawa Senators on Monday night.
Six different players scored for the Hawks in this affair. They included Alex DeBrincat, Patrick Kane, Dylan Strome, Brandon Saad, Gustav Forsling, and Jonathan Toews scored goals for the Blackhawks. DeBrincat stood out most for the home team. He earned the game’s first star with a five-point night, which included two more goals for a hat trick, in addition to two assists. Five players replied for the Senators, including Bobby Ryan, Rudolfs Balcers, Colin White, Mark Stone, and Thomas Chabot. White and Chabot both added one more each on the night to finish with pairs.
Chicago improves its record to 25-26-9 and 59 points with the win. They rank 20th in the NHL. Meanwhile, the Senators record drops to 22-32-5 as they remain at 49 points and last in the league.
The offense was turned on for both teams in this affair. After the first period, a combined nine goals were scored, which favored Chicago 5-4. Another three were scored in the second, and three more were scored in the final frame. After 60 minutes, the puck had crossed the goal line a combined 15 times.
Overall, 23 different players registered at least one point in this game, including 10 from the Hawks and 13 from the Senators. The offense was heavily generated from the forward ranks of both teams. Only four Hawk forwards went pointless, while every forward on Ottawa’s roster except Zack Smith managed a point. Out of all the players with points, 11 had multi-point nights, including six players on the Hawks and five on the Senators.
The offensive outburst did not do the goaltenders any favors in this game. The starting goalies for both teams were chased out of the crease in the first period. Their back-ups did not fair much better in relief.
On the night, Anders Nilsson had his worst start as an Ottawa Senator. His numbers were miserable after allowing four goals on just 12 shots. In 13:22 time on ice, he had a 17.96 goals against average and a .667 save percentage. Meanwhile, Craig Anderson did his best to hold the fort. Entering his 600th game in his hometown, the Senators netminder stopped 26 of 30 shots in the loss, with a 5.35 goals against average and a .867 save percentage.
At the other end, Collin Delia was out quickly after letting three goals in on 10 shots in less than eight minutes of play. He was yanked with a 22.74 goals against average and a .700 save percentage. Cam Ward ended up registering the win, but it was close. The 34-year-old saw four pucks zip past him, and benefited from Smith’s misfortune of missing a wide-open net midway in the game, and Matt Duchene ringing a puck off the post shortly after. Ward concluded the game with a 4.61 goals against average and a .857 save percentage.
- Trade talk is heating up in the Canadian capital. At the forefront are Ottawa’s leading forward scorers, Stone, Duchene, and Ryan Dzingel. The trio has 61 points in 59 games, 58 points in 50 games, and 44 points in 57 games, respectively.
- Bruce Garrioch of Postmedia reports there is a strong link between the trade rumors and the Winnipeg Jets. According to the columnist, the Jets have significant interest in all three Senators, but their primary interest is Stone, who is a Winnipeg native. Ottawa’s general manager Pierre Dorion recently spent multiple days scouting the entire Jets organization.
- As of Monday night, the NHL Trade Deadline is less than a week away and closing in fast.
Official 3 Stars of the Game
- Alex DeBrincat, Chicago
- Patrick Kane, Chicago
- Colin White, Ottawa
The Senators conclude their four-game road trip on Thursday in New Jersey to take on the Devils. The Devils are 23-28-8 and have 54 points, ranking 27th in the NHL. Ottawa is 1-1-0 versus New Jersey this season. The last time these two teams met, Miles Wood charged over Anderson in the Senators crease and knocked the 37-year-old out with a concussion. It will be interesting to see who on Ottawa remembers the injustice on that play.
Cover Photo Credit: Jeff Haynes / AP
Billy Morrison covers the Ottawa Senators and the Atlantic Division for Full Press Coverage. Follow Billy on Twitter, @BillyMorrison01.