Tonight in Phoenix, the Chicago Blackhawks exploded right out of the gate meaning business. Not like they had something to prove…blazing into their 11th game with 20 of a possible 22 points, the Hawks are enjoying the hottest streak in the NHL.
Almost right off the bat, Jamal Mayers dropped the gloves with public enemy #1 Raffi Torres. 6 minutes later, Andrew Shaw with the puck managed to pass it to himself, and then send it off to Viktor Stalberg, who gave Chicago the 1-0 lead.
From then until the end of the period, Patrick Kane decided to become a one-man highlight reel. He banged home a rebound after Patrick Sharp failed to net the puck. Minutes later, his pass found Dave Bolland’s stick and the ensuing slap shot lit the lamp for Chicago once again. And before the Coyotes’ hapless goalie Mike Smith could even catch his breath, Kane again went on the attack. His powerplay wrister elevated the Blackhawks to a 4-0 lead as the period closed out.
Martin Hanzal gave the Coyotes a glimmer of hope to start the second, but the Blackhawks put an end to that quickly enough. Midway through the frame, Marian Hossa found Jonathan Toews, who put away his 5th goal of the season.
After Brian Bickell made it 6-1 for the Hawks, Smith was out and Jason LaBarbera took over in net for Phoenix.
LaBarbera fared better than Smith for the remainder of the game, stopping any Blackhawks players from scoring. With a minute left to play, Raffi Torres, who got the game going with his fight against Mayers, managed to slip one past Ray Emery and bring the final score to 6-2
With this dominant win that spoke volumes of their intent, the Chicago Blackhawks have taken their place as the top team in the NHL thus far.
After a short 3-day hiatus, they fly to Nashville to take on the 5th place Predators in the west.
About the Author
Written by Anna Santiago
26-year old sports writer from Calgary, Alberta. A hockey and basketball lover above all.