The Chicago Blackhawks scored three third period goals and cruised to a 5-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks. That was the Blackhawks fourth straight win as they lead the Western Conference, meanwhile Vancouver continues to suffer from the hangover from last year’s playoff run as they have are currently out of the playoffs.
The first goal of the game did not come until early in the second period. Jannik Hansen scored his fifth goal of the season and just: 38 into the period Vancouver had a 1-0 lead. That would be the only time Vancouver would get the puck past Chicago goalie Corey Crawford. Chicago answered back with two power play goals in the second period to take a 2-1 lead into the second period intermission. Andrew Brunette scored his fourth goal of the season on the power play when Ryan Kesler took a tripping penalty. Chicago took a 2-1 lead when Patrick Kane scored his seventh goal of the year just: 11 after Alex Burrows was in the sin bin for slashing.
Chicago put the game away in the third period when they scored three goals in the last eight minutes of the game to secure the victory. Jonathan Toews made the score 3-1 when Viktor Stalberg spotted Toews wide open in the slot and he beat Vancouver goalie Cory Schneider. Chicago increased their lead to 4-1 about two minutes later when Patrick Sharp took a shot from the left side that dribbled past Schneider into the net, a shot that Schneider should have stopped as the melt down continued. Vancouver finished off the scoring when Steve Montador’s blast from the slot beat Schneider and Chicago had their 12th win of the year.
Vancouver continues to be inconsistent so far this year as they have a record of 5-5 in their last 10 games, with a season record of 9-9-1. It would appear the Canucks have not recovered from losing to the Boston Bruins in the Stanley Cup Finals last year. With Roberto Luongo out with an upper body injury they will have to count on backup goalie Schneider as they go on the road for three games next week. With only four teams with a worse record then the Canucks in the Western Conference they better get their act together before it’s too late.
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Written by Kevin Kelly