10 observations: Blackhawks rally to beat Blue Jackets originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
The Blackhawks rallied to beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 4-3 on Saturday at Nationwide Arena.
Here are 10 observations from the win:
1. It was an ugly start for the Blackhawks. They gave up a goal 63 seconds into the first period and then a second one at the 3:13 mark, forcing head coach Jeremy Colliton to call a timeout. And it changed the momentum of the game.
2. Since the timeout, the Blackhawks outshot the Blue Jackets 16-1 over the next 25 minutes and outscored them 3-0. A terrific response by Chicago.
3. The Blackhawks were awarded a 5-on-3 power play in the first period and didn't capitalize on it, but they did cash in on the 5-on-4 man advantage when Alex DeBrincat buried his 21st goal of the season. It was the Blackhawks' second power-play goal in their last 21 opportunities.
4. Wyatt Kalynuk scored his first career NHL goal when his shot barely trickled past Elvis Merzlikins to put the Blackhawks ahead 3-2. The Blue Jackets challenged for goaltender interference but did not win. It's probably not how Kalynuk drew up his first tally, but he'll certainly take it.
5. The line of Kirby Dach, DeBrincat and Dylan Strome teamed up for a beautiful goal in the second period to extend the Blackhawks' lead to 4-2, but it was Adam Boqvist who started the play with a perfect stretch pass. He wasn't credited with an assist, but that won't go unnoticed by his teammates and coaching staff.
6. After being a healthy scratch in the last three games, Carl Soderberg was reinserted into the lineup and immediately made an impact. He scored a goal — after winning the faceoff — and had a team-high three shots on net in the first period alone.
7. Kevin Lankinen had a tough start by giving up two goals on the first four shots he faced, but he made several key stops at opportune times throughout the contest, most notably on a Kyle Sherwood breakaway in the second period to preserve a 3-2 lead and Oliver Bjorkstrand in the third period to keep the lead at 4-2. Lankinen finished the game with 23 saves on 26 shots for a save percentage of .885.
8. The Blue Jackets were without five key players on Saturday and lost two of them ahead of Monday's trade deadline: Nick Foligno (upper-body injury), Boone Jenner (broken finger), Riley Nash (traded), David Savard (traded) and Zach Werenski (sports hernia).
9. Calvin de Haan, who recorded two assists, left in the middle of the second period with an apparent injury. The team called it a hip pointer and he did not return.
10. The Blackhawks held out Mattias Janmark from the lineup. Colliton said it was an "organizational decision" and not performance-based, which indicates he could be moved by Monday's deadline.