Blackhawks hit big bump in road in 4-2 loss to Canucks

Paul Skrbina, Chicago Tribune on

Published in Hockey

Hawks goalie Anton Forsberg, who has stepped to the forefront with Corey Crawford showing no signs of imminent return from an upper-body injury that put him on injured reserve Dec. 27, made some big saves early.

But just after a Hawks power play ended in the second period, the Canucks' Brendan Gaunce tied the score. Bo Horvat untied it 4:25 later when he redirected a shot between Forsberg's legs.

Daniel Sedin beat Forsberg early in the third to take a two-goal lead, which Alex DeBrincat cut to one with a laser with 9:41 left. But Gaunce scored again later in the third.

"'Fors' is coming off two really good games; call (Nashville) a goalie win," Quenneville said. "It has been a healthy situation in a tough spot."

A spot Forsberg said he's happy to be in.

"I always want to play, simple as that," Forsberg said. "(Jeff Glass has) been playing well and I have to play well to get the net. It's a competition, and that's good."

Going into Thursday, Forsberg had won three in a row on the road and had a 1.33 goals-against average and .957 save percentage during that time.

He made a career-high 42 saves Tuesday night, including 22 during the third period, in a 2-1 victory over the Nashville Predators.

"We've had confidence in him all along," Patrick Kane said. "He has had some good games where we really haven't helped him out too much. We all thought he was capable of doing what he did the other night.


"Maybe (he took his play) to another level against Nashville."

The Hawks likely will have to keep taking it to another level to stay in the thick of the playoff race.

On the heels of playing six straight at home, the Hawks are in the midst of a four-game road trip, and a five-in-seven on the road swing.

"Sometimes I think you simplify your game a little more on the road, knowing you don't have to put on a show," Kane said.

For now, that show is on the road.

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