While the Chicago Blackhawks have been one of the best teams at home in the NHL this season, it looks as though they're planning on expanding their empire to western Canada. After beating both Edmonton and Calgary on the road this week, the Blackhawks finished off their sweep of Canada's left coast with a 3-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday night. The win is the seventh straight for the Blackhawks, which is their longest winning streak since the team put together eight straight victories back in January of 1981.
While the Canucks got on the board early with a goal by Daniel Sedin at the 3:45 mark of the first period, Cristobal Huet shut the door on the Canucks for the rest of the night. Huet would finish the night with 30 saves for the Hawks, and has now given up only three goals on 106 shots in his last four starts. The Hawks are 4-0 in that span.
The Hawks got on the board early in the second period when Patrick Kane scored his 16th goal of the season, sneaking a wrist shot by Curtis Sanford from the right circle to tie the game at one all, and Patrick Sharp followed Kane's goal with his 18th of the season a little over three minutes later to give the team a lead it wouldn't relent.
Jonathan Toews finished the Canucks off with an empty netter from outside the blue line with 39 seconds left, his ninth goal of the season.
The win improved the Hawks record to 18-6-7 to give them 43 points on the season, just five points behind the Detroit Red Wings who defeated the Los Angeles Kings 6-4 earlier in the evening. The Hawks will now take some time off and return home before playing the Philadelphia Flyers next Friday night at the United Center. After that they'll travel to Minnesota to take on the Wild before playing back to back games against the Red Wings next week. The second of which will of course be played at Wrigley Field on New Year's Day, and if the Hawks keep playing like they are at the moment, they could move into first place in the Central Division with a win.