The Chicago Blackhawks scored their second consecutive shutout victory on Sunday night as they knocked off the Vancouver Canucks by a score of 4-0 at the United Center.
Patrick Kane extended his points streak to 26 games with a secondary assist on the first goal of the game, and Corey Crawford scored his fourth shutout of the season to help lead the Blackhawks to victory.
The Blackhawks got several good shifts from their forward lines in the early stages of the game, with their first and fourth lines leading the way. Andrew Desjardins fed Marcus Kruger on a 3-on-2 rush early in the contest, and Teuvo Teravainen had a shot off a Marian Hossa pass near the net, but Ryan Miller was able to steer away both shots to stand up to the Blackhawks’ onslaught.
The Canucks responded with a great counterpunch of their own, requiring Corey Crawford to make some big saves. Adam Cracknell had a big shot on the rush that hit Crawford high near the mask, and Jannik Hansen had his wrist shot blocked away by the goaltender as he kept the game scoreless.
Later in the period, the Blackhawks got a power play chance, and they were able to cash in. Artemi Panarin rifled a shot off of the post that bounced right into the corner, and after he found Duncan Keith in the face-off circle he got a good deflection off of Hansen’s stick in front to beat Miller and give the Blackhawks a 1-0 lead.
Early in the second period, Panarin was tagged with a too many men penalty, but Crawford was able to kill off the power play. Alex Edler had a shot knocked away on the low side, and Crawford steered it into the corner to keep Chicago up.
The Blackhawks generated some chances of their own as the period wore on, with Desjardins flipping a shot just wide on the rush and Patrick Kane seeing a scoring chance go high on a breakaway opportunity. Crawford had to make some saves as well during the middle stages of the frame, robbing Yannick Weber on a high shot to keep his shutout intact.
The Hawks got another chance on a power play late in the period, but despite some good chances, Miller kept the puck out of the net. A tremendous chance for Panarin fell by the wayside as he hammered a one-timer slapshot in on net off a feed from Kane, and Miller slid across the crease to knock it away with his glove.
The third period began with the Blackhawks giving up some chances, but they slowly turned the momentum into their favor, and they ultimately cashed in with a critical insurance goal. Bryan Bickell got a shot on the rush that he fired in on net, and although Miller slowed it down, Dennis Rasmussen tapped home the loose puck to make it a 2-0 game.
A short time later, the Canucks got a power play of their own, and although it appeared that they had cut into Chicago’s lead, the goal was ultimately waved off. Daniel Sedin got inside position near the net and punched the puck toward his brother Henrik, who shovelled it past Crawford. Officials ruled the play an illegal hand pass, and play continued with Chicago ahead by two goals.
The Canucks pulled their goaltender late in the contest, but it didn’t matter as Chicago continued to deny them chances in the zone. Andrew Shaw ultimately sealed the victory with an empty net goal, and Brandon Mashinter added a goal with less than ten seconds to go to send the Hawks to their second consecutive shutout victory.