Blackhawks hold off Panthers for 3-2 win at United Center
Latest defeat has the Cats back at the .500 mark.
Patrick Kane scored a goal and added an assist to the lead the Chicago Blackhawks to a 3-2 win over the visiting Florida Panthers.
The loss was third straight for the Panthers (0-2-1) who fell to 3-3-1 on the young season.
Former Columbus Blue Jacket Artem Anisimov opened the scoring at 4:02 of the first period from Kane and Brent Seabrook. Anisimov skated by Steven Kampfer and with a clear path to the net, was able to easily deposit the puck past Roberto Luongo.
The Panthers would strike back just thirty-four seconds later. After Nick Bjugstad set up Vincent Trocheck for a potential shot, the ensuing attempt was flubbed. Luckily, the puck kept heading in on the Chicago goal, where Trocheck was finally able to poke it in through a crowd of players for the unassisted tally.
Seabrook would come up with the only goal of the second period. The veteran defenseman took a pass from Artemi Panarin and hammered it by Luongo. Kane would pick up the secondary assist with Anisimov providing a helpful screen. The goal came with Kampfer in the penalty box for hooking Viktor Tikhonov.
Kane would bag the eventual game-winner seventeen seconds into the third period. The speedy winger blew by Erik Gudbranson after taking a beautiful lead pass from Seabrook and moved in alone on Luongo before roofing a backhand shot into the top of the cage.
Florida would reply at the 7:24 mark with a 5-on-3 power-play goal. Jaromir Jagr did the honors, knocking a loose puck home after Dave Bolland's crossing pass hit Corey Crawford's pad and Bjugstad was able to jab it free. The assist was Bolland's first point of the campaign.
The Panthers wouldn't really threaten much the rest of the way and the Hawks were able to close them out to raise their record to 4-3.
Up next for the Cats is a rematch with the red-hot Dallas Stars on Saturday. The Cats will need a big effort to pull out a win and salvage this road trip.
Bows & Arrows
- Aleksander Barkov left the game midway through the second period with an upper-body injury after blocking a shot. Hopefully, The Cats top line center will be back soon... like real soon.
- Vincent Trocheck's goal was his first point since the opening-night win over Philadelphia.
- Tough first night of action for defenseman Steven Kampfer, who tagged in for Alex Petrovic. Kampfer was beaten badly on Chicago's first goal and his second period penalty set the stage for the Seabrook goal.
- Roberto Luongo turned aside 24 shots in taking the loss. Overall, Lu was pretty sharp in the game, making some key saves to keep the Panthers close.
- The Cats only mananged to put 18 shots on Corey Crawford. In addition to his 16 saves, Crawford drew the second assist on Kane's game-winning goal.
- Some numbers: Nick Bjugstad had a team-high four shots; Erik Gudbranson dished out five hits; and Dave Bolland won 11 of 17 face-offs.
- Breeze through Second City Hockey and The Committed Indian for more on Chicago's first game sans stalwart Duncan Keith.
Highlights (courtesy of NHL.com)