A number of issues contribute to their inability to dominate against teams they should beat–but a particularly notable one is their inability to shine for a full 60 minutes of regulation hockey.
It’s the middle of the game that proves especially problematic. This season, the team has 63 shots in the second period but no goals to show for them.
Dating back to Game 7 of 2014 Western Conference Finals, that’s a 101:35 goal-less streak in 2nd period for #Blackhawks
— Christopher Kamka (@ckamka) October 22, 2014
It breaks down like this:
- Blackhawks-Predators: Blackhawks led the Preds in shots, 9-7, but couldn’t find the back of the net.
- Blackhawks-Flyers: In a shutout, Chicago still couldn’t find the net in the second period. Philly took more shots, 8-7.
- Blackhawks-Predators: Chicago the Predators led in shots 11-4 during that 20 minutes, but no goals.
- Blackhawks-Flames: Calgary scored in the second period despite Chicago outshooting them 16-6.
- Blackhawks-Sabres: A close 11-9 shot advantage didn’t pay off for Chicago against Buffalo.
- Blackhawks-Stars: Chicago had twice as many shots as Dallas–18-6–but the Stars scored two goals in the second.
Powerful performance for full 60 minutes of regulation (not to mention some electricity on the Power Play) could save Chicago some woes in the final minutes, like they experienced Thursday.
Predators Attack in Nashville
James Neal‘s natural hat trick gave the Predators a clear advantage over the Blackhawks in Chicago’s second road game.
Chicago’s fruitless second period included Neal’s second goal–a hard slapshot from the opposite hashmark on a pass from Filip Forsberg.
He’d complete his hatty 1:52 into the third, redirecting a setup from Ryan Ellis and Forsberg. Andrew Shaw‘s gritty goal with 7:24 left in the game would be too little, too late, when none of the other boys in white could get the third period’s 17 shots past Pekka Rinne. If it’s any consolation for Chicago, though, Nashville is actively trying to force fans out with “Keep the Red Out” promotions for anyone eschewing the Red and White–and the crowd maintained large splashes of red.
Hawks soaring past the Flyers
The second period slump didn’t stop Raanta’s shutout against the Broad Street boys Tuesday night.
He made 32 saves to lead Chicago in a 4-0 victory.
Saad scored first for the Hawks, charging the net to make a play on a Bryan Bickell, Brad Richards setup with 7:06 left in the first.
Chicago led in shots 43-32.
Corey Crawford was called day-to-day with an upper body injury Tuesday, but has not traveled with the team on this Nashville-St. Louis road trip.
The Blackhawks play the Blues at 7:00 p.m. CT tonight and the Ottawa Senators at 6 p.m. CT back in Chicago Sunday.