After allowing two early goals, the Blackhawks bounced back to defeat the Golden Knights for the first time in eight meetings.
The Chicago Blackhawks scored five unanswered goals after falling behind 2-0 to defeat the Vegas Golden Knights at T-Mobile Arena on Wednesday night.
Patrick Kane and Dylan Strome each tallied three points, and Corey Crawford made 39 saves to earn the victory.
2019 No. 3 pick Kirby Dach recorded the first multi-point game of his NHL career with one goal and one assist.
With the win, the Blackhawks are now 7-7-4 on the season and 4-1-1 in their last six games.
From the moment the puck was dropped, the game was utter chaos. The Golden Knights struck first at 2:58 as William Carrier redirected a Nicolas Hague shot past Crawford. Erik Gustafsson was caught being a bystander in front of Crawford on the play.
Shortly after, Vegas doubled their lead on the powerplay with a goal from William Karlsson. Calvin de Haan got caught out of position to allow Karlsson a breakaway, and the Swedish forward snuck one through Crawford’s five-hole.
The Blackhawks responded just 16 seconds later as Dylan Strome made a beautiful feed to set up Patrick Kane for a one-timer to extend his point streak to seven games.
The first period was mass chaos, but somehow the second period was even more hectic. The Golden Knights thought they took a 3-1 lead thanks to Alex Tuch, but the goal was reviewed and taken off the board. The goal reversal seemed to light a fire under the Blackhawks.
After being outplayed through the first 25 minutes of the game, the Blackhawks flipped the switch and began to take control.
Calvin de Haan found the back of the net for the first time as a Blackhawk after a terrific feed from Zack Smith to tie the game. Smith got off to a rough start to begin the year, but the veteran has been solid in his last four games.
The Blackhawks would strike again just 45 seconds later to take the lead, as Dylan Strome found Erik Gustafsson in the slot for his first goal of the season. Gustafsson struggled in the first period, but the goal seemed to get him going.
The remainder of the second period was full of back-and-forth action, but the Blackhawks were able to head into the second intermission with the lead thanks to Corey Crawford. Crawford allowed two early goals, but the 34-year-old netminder stood on his head to keep the Blackhawks in front.
The Blackhawks were on their heels defensively for most of the first 40 minutes, but they came out of the intermission with a purpose. After allowing 31 shots on goal through two periods, the ‘Hawks held Vegas to just four shots through the first nine and a half minutes of the third period.
Kirby Dach scored his third goal of the season to extend the Blackhawks lead to two after another marvelous play by Zack Smith. Smith carried the puck up ice in transition, then pulled up in the Vegas zone to create space and find Dach in front of the net. Ryan Carpenter helped get the puck over to Dach and wound up with the primary assist.
Dylan Strome increased the Blackhawks lead to 5-2 at 16:39 to seal the victory. Alex DeBrincat made a fantastic pass to spring Strome for a breakaway, and the 2016 third overall pick roofed a shot over the glove of Marc-Andre Fleury.
Nate Schmidt scored a goal with just one minute remaining to make things interesting, but Crawford and the Blackhawks managed to hold on to win the game 5-3. It was an impressive come-from-behind effort from the Blackhawks for just their second road victory of the season.
The Blackhawks are back in action on Saturday night in Nashville to take on the 9-6-3 Predators. These two teams last met on Oct. 29, which resulted in a putrid 3-0 loss for the ‘Hawks. That game easily could have been 8-0 had it not been for Robin Lehner making 48 saves in a losing effort.
To make things more interesting, Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne had some choice words about the contest during his post-game interview.
That certainly should get the Blackhawks fired up heading into Saturday’s contest. The game is slated for 7:00 p.m. and is scheduled to be on ESPN+, FS-TN, and NBCSCH+.
For more Blackhawks news and updates, follow the author (@JackBushman2) on Twitter. Make sure to check out the author’s podcast, Talkin’ Hawkey, which can be found on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Twitter (@TalkinHawkey).