ten observations: Alex Stalock shines once again as Blackhawks beat Predators

The Blackhawks held on to beat the Nashville Predators two-1 at Bridgestone Arena on Thursday.

Right here are 10 observations from the win:

1. Going into Thursday, the Predators have been 13–three in their final 16 games against Chicago. The Blackhawks ultimately beat the Predators in regulation for the 1st time considering the fact that Dec. 18, 2018, which was a two-1 win at the United Center. Go figure.

two. Alex Stalock had a bit of a shaky start out but settled down just after the 1st period, despite the fact that it did not come devoid of a couple of hold-your-breath moments, which I will get to in the subsequent bullet point. His most critical quit of the evening came on Philip Tomasino, who had a breakaway in the 1st period of a – game but Stalock produced the save — he had to appear back to make positive it did not slip previous him. Stalock stopped 35 of 36 shots for a save percentage of .972. His shutout bid was broken with 23.six seconds left in regulation. Ouch.

three. The Predators have been awarded a penalty shot in the second period just after Stalock threw his stick at Rasmus Asplund, but they could not capitalize on their try. Matt Duchene mishandled the puck and Stalock produced the uncomplicated save. It was the third straight game Stalock faced a penalty shot just after performing so against Boston on Tuesday when he denied David Pastrnak and Detroit final week when he stopped Dylan Larkin. A challenging missed chance for the Predators.

four. The line of Joey Anderson, Boris Katchouk and Jujhar Khaira was, by far, the most successful trio for Chicago. When the 3 of them have been on the ice with each other at even strength, the Blackhawks led in shot attempts (19-eight) and scoring possibilities (9-three), per Organic Stat Trick. When the other 3 lines have been on the ice, the Blackhawks trailed in shot attempts (37-16) and scoring possibilities (17-7). Oh, I forgot to mention, Anderson scored his third purpose in 5 games to place his group ahead two-, which was the icing on the cake. They earned that purpose.

five. The Blackhawks scored the 1st purpose for the sixth time in seven games. In 4 of the final six games, they’ve held two- leads. They’ve gotten off to some good begins lately, which was a huge struggle for them earlier in the season.

six. Lukas Reichel scored his third profession NHL purpose, and it will likely be 1 of the weirder ones he scores at this level. He and Andreas Athanasiou had a two-on-1, and Reichel’s attempted pass to Athanasiou was broken up by Dante Fabbro, who ended up crashing into Juuse Saros. The puck then identified its way in for the reason that the momentum carried it forward, and it occurred when the net came off its moorings. It counted for the reason that the Predators knocked the net off themselves.

7. I believed the Caleb and Seth Jones pairing was strong. They led the group in ice time however once again, and the ice tilted in the Blackhawks’ favor when they have been out there.

eight. With Jonathan Toews nevertheless out, Max Domi traded, and Cole Guttman out for the season with a shoulder injury, the Blackhawks’ center depth has taken a significant hit. The Blackhawks have been 1 of the most effective faceoff teams all season lengthy, but they have not been as robust in that division as of late.

9. Even although they have been sellers at the trade deadline, the Predators have caught fire the final couple of weeks. They are eight-three-1 more than their final 12 games and are only 4 points out of the final wildcard spot in the West with 3 games in hand. And they are performing it devoid of their top purpose scorer Filip Forsberg. Who would’ve believed? I do not feel they will go really far if they get into the playoffs, but they are battling.

ten. The Blackhawks signed defenseman prospect Wyatt Kaiser to a 3-year, entry-level contract on Tuesday. He joined the group on the 5-game road trip but didn’t play in this game. They want him to get a couple of practices in 1st. He’s a very good all-about defenseman, and I am curious to see how his game will translate to the NHL level.

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