The Chicago Blackhawks have been on quite a roll lately, and Marian Hossa joined the party in a big way on Sunday night as he scored twice in a 6-3 victory over the Colorado Avalanche.
Hossa’s goals snapped a 14-game drought for the winger, the longest such streak of his NHL career. Patrick Kane also scored twice in the game to bring his goal total to 25 on the season, tying Alex Ovechkin and Jamie Benn for the NHL lead in that category.
The game got off to a sluggish start for the Hawks as they surrendered the first six shots of the game to Colorado, but their offense picked up the slack. Brandon Mashinter got the scoring started in the first period as he notched a goal off a rebounded Ryan Garbutt shot, and then Kane got on the board as well as he fired a shot through an Artem Anisimov screen to make it 2-0 after 20 minutes of play.
The second period saw the Blackhawks amp up the pressure even more, with Hossa scoring early on to make it 3-0, but Colorado stormed back. Matt Duchene scored twice in the frame, going top shelf to beat Corey Crawford to get the Avalanche on the board, and just a few minutes later, he scored again to get his team to within a goal.
After that goal, it was all Chicago. On a power play later in the period, Kane got into an open spot in the slot, and he wristed a shot underneath Semyon Varlamov’s glove to put the Blackhawks back in front by a 4-2 margin.
Calvin Pickard replaced Varlamov after the Kane goal, but the story was the same as the Blackhawks continued to fire away at him. On a rush into the offensive zone, Andrew Shaw flipped a saucer pass across the ice to Jonathan Toews, and the Blackhawks’ captain uncorked a precise slap shot to beat Pickard and make it a 5-2 game.
The Blackhawks capped off the period with a spectacular passing play that set up yet another tally. Shaw got things started on a pass back to Toews on the rush, and the center performed a similar pass onto Hossa’s stick, and the veteran forward beat Pickard for his second goal of the period to give the Blackhawks a 6-2 edge with 20 minutes to go.
The Avalanche ended up pulling their goaltender with 11 minutes to go in the game, but it still took a long time for them to get their offensive groove back. Finally it was Nathan MacKinnon doing the honors with five minutes remaining, as he moved the puck around Kane and fired a wrist shot over Crawford’s glove to bring Colorado back to within a 6-3 margin.
That goal ended up being the final one scored in the game, and the Blackhawks held on for their seventh consecutive victory.
The Hawks will look to run that streak to eight in a row on Tuesday night when they welcome the Nashville Predators to the United Center.