Sports Blackhawks stop 2-game skid, beat Stars 4-2
Blackhawks activate Kirby Dach from injured reserve
With the Blackhawks surprisingly still clinging to a playoff spot in the Central Division, Dach is a major boost to their postseason hopes.
CHICAGO — Kirby Dach, Dominik Kubilik and Alex DeBrincat scored, Patrick Kane had a goal and an assist, and the Chicago Blackhawks beat the Dallas Stars 4-2 on Tuesday night.
The Stars rallied from a three-goal deficit in the third period, but goaltender Kevin Lankinen stopped Dallas’ Roope Hintz in the slot with 93 seconds to play after goals by Andrew Cogliano and Radek Faksa closed the gap.
“You knew they were going to have a push there in the third,” Kane said. “It became a real hockey game. Gotta keep building off this.”
The victory stopped Chicago’s two-game losing streak, and extended Dallas’ losing skid to two games, dropping them to sixth-place in the Central Division. The Blackhawks remain in fourth place.
NHL postpones Wednesday's Calgary-Vancouver game
The NHL has decided to ere on the side of caution as a result of Adam Gaudette’s positive COVID-19 test. Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reports (Twitter link) that tonight’s game between the Canucks and Flames has been postponed. TSN’s Frank Seravalli tweets that the decision was made after more information has surfaced regarding Vancouver’s test results; that information obviously has not yet been made public.
“We responded well in a lot of different ways,” Chicago coach Jeremy Colliton said of his team’s ability to hang on. “We were pretty solid defensively, faced adversity in the third. Now we want to take advantage of it.”
Chicago’s Dach opened the scoring in the first period, about 11 minutes after his pass to set up an apparent goal by Kane was ruled offside. Dach accepted a pass from Kane and flipped a 15-foot wrist shot over goaltender Jake Oettinger’s glove side at 12:05.
“He’s got to get used to making plays in tight spaces, which he’s so good at,” Colliton said. “If he can find that level consistently, it changes our team.”
The Blackhawks made it 2-0 midway through the second period, Kubilik beating Oettinger from the left slot after collecting a cross-ice pass from Vinnie Hinostroza. The goal came about 40 seconds after Dallas’ Blake Comeau hit the post, the Stars’ best chance in the first 40 minutes.
NHL postpones Canucks' next three games due to COVID
The NHL has postponed three more games for the Vancouver Canucks, shutting them down through April 6 after Travis Hamonic was added to the COVID protocol on Thursday. Hamonic joined Adam Gaudette, who has tested positive for coronavirus and a member of the team’s coaching staff. © Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports The NHL has shut down the Canucks through April 6. The league is hoping that the Canucks will be able to play on April 8 against the Calgary Flames, but games against the Edmonton Oilers and Winnipeg Jets in the coming days will have to be pushed. All practices have also been canceled for the time being.
“We’re just making the wrong play at the wrong time, and that’s exactly what they want,” Cogliano said. “The first goal was a bonehead play by me. I shoot it into their player and they create a 2-on-1.”
DeBrincat gave Chicago a 3-0 lead with a wrist shot from the slot with 54.5 seconds left in the second. He stole the clearing pass of Dallas defenceman Andrej Sekera in the left-wing corner and was unchallenged in skating into the slot to beat Oettinger over the right shoulder.
“We fell into a little bit of a trap,” said Dallas assistant coach John Stevens, who ran the bench with head coach Rick Bowness in COVID protocol. “They go North-South and play a possession game. We made it far too easy on their top players.”
Cogliano ended Lankinen’s shutout bid with a short-handed goal on a breakaway 1:29 into the third period. It ended a stretch of nearly 120 minutes without a goal by the Stars.
Anaheim Ducks demote rookie phenom Trevor Zegras to AHL
No matter how it’s viewed, the Anaheim Ducks have made a unique move. The team has announced that rookie phenom Trevor Zegras has been re-assigned to the AHL. But there’s a catch; Zegras’ demotion is not being viewed as a punishment by the organization, but rather a reward. The team is actually so impressed with the 20-year-old forward’s development that they are shifting him from the wing to his natural center position and simply want to start him in that role with the San Diego Gulls before bringing him back to the NHL squad. The club’s press release stated as follows: © Gary A.
Faksa made it 3-2 with 6:14 to play, collecting defenceman Esa Lindell’s 60-foot shot off the boards and banking it over a diving Lankinen.
Kane added an empty-net goal for Chicago with seven seconds to play.
Oettinger made 24 saves, Lankinen had 25.
STEVENS SUBS FOR BOWNESS
Dallas assistant coach John Stevens was in charge of the bench Tuesday night with head coach Rick Bowness still in Raleigh, North Carolina, awaiting NHL clearance after what the Stars termed a false positive for COVID-19 on Sunday morning.
Bowness, 66, was pulled from the bench after the second period of Sunday’s loss to Carolina after what general manager Jim Nill called a “low grade” positive test. Bowness was vaccinated earlier this year. He spoke with the team on a teleconference on Tuesday morning, but Stevens and the other assistants handled bench strategy against the Blackhawks.
The start of Dallas’ season was delayed after 17 players tested positive.
DEJA VU FOR HINOSTROZA
Forward Vinnie Hinostroza set up Dominik Kubalik’s second period goal in his return to Chicago. Hinostroza was reacquired from Florida on Friday for forward Brad Morrison. Hinostroza, who grew up in a Chicago suburb, is the 14th former Blackhawks reacquired by general manager Stan Bowman, and the 15th deal. Kris Versteeg was reacquired twice.
The Stars and Blackhawks meet again Thursday night in Chicago.
More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
The Associated Press
Blackhawks reportedly not content with Nikita Zadorov .
The Chicago Blackhawks were reportedly listening to offers for defenseman Nikita Zadorov at the NHL Trade Deadline, but ultimately decided not to move him. However, that doesn’t mean that the two sides will stay together for much longer. As Ben Pope writes for the Chicago Sun-Times, the Blackhawks have dropped some hints that they are not content with the big blue liner and time is running out for him to prove himself. © Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports Zadorov, 25, is in his first season in Chicago after coming over from the Colorado Avalanche in the Brandon Saad trade this past off-season.