Maple Leafs hand Blackhawks 4th straight defeat

Paul Skrbina, Chicago Tribune on

Published in Hockey

CHICAGO -- There was some good for the Blackhawks on Wednesday night.

They scored a power-play goal for the first time in 17 chances when Brent Seabrook's zinger bounced off a Maple Leafs' stick and past Frederik Andersen just 5 minutes, 29 seconds into the game.

There was some bad for the Hawks, too, during their 3-2 overtime loss, the team's fourth in a row to conclude their six-game homestand with a 1-5 record.

Not the least of which occurred when the Leafs' William Nylander scored on a penalty shot six seconds into overtime.

The ugly for the Hawks, well, that constant remained no matter the outcome.

The Hawks took the ice Wednesday night still in last place in their division. Still seven points out of the second wild-card spot in the Western Conference, with four teams in front of them. Still without a goal in the previous two games.

Still ill able to afford to stand still anymore.

So Alex DeBrincat joined Jonathan Toews and Anthony Duclair on the top line.

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And Brandon Saad shifted to the second line with Patrick Kane and Nick Schmaltz, whose tying goal in the third period withstood the scrutiny of replay after the Leafs challenged that Artem Anisimov had committed goalie interference.

The changes resulted in some quality chances early, too, though the Hawks hit the post twice in the first period to run their season total to a league-high 39 in that department.

Going into Wednesday the Hawks were tied for the second-worst power-play percentage, 14.8, despite being tied for the second-most chances in the league at 175.

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