10 Observations: Hawks Lose Heartbreakingly which originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
The Blackhawks fell to the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-4 on Saturday at the Scotiabank Arena.
Here are 10 observations about the leak:
1. Another eventful Chicago-Toronto game is in the books. The Blackhawks scored first, then finished behind 4-1 before drawing 4-4 near the middle of the third period, but ultimately lost by regulation. They deserved at least one point.
2. Kevin Lankinen, no doubt, wants to get that first goal back, but he could lose sleep over his fifth goal with 1:20 remaining. The puck took a random rebound and fell into David Kampf’s lap for the game’s winner. It was a heartbreaking way to lose.
3. According to Natural Stat Trick, the Maple Leafs were the No. 1 team in the standings in 5-on-5 high-risk chances for 60 minutes at 13.5. The Maple Leafs only had five against the Blackhawks, which were the fewest draws they had in a game all season. The Blackhawks kept them in check.
4. The Blackhawks have committed three penalties in the first period and the Maple Leafs have turned into two of those chances. It was the second time in three games that the Blackhawks allowed more goals in powerplay after giving up one or less in the first 24.
5. The Blackhawks held the Maple Leafs at 5:46 of the offensive zone possession time and only conceded one goal chance on the run, according to Sportlogiq. Toronto’s seasonal average in offensive zone possession time per game is 7:18 (4th) and running chances are 7.1 (second).
6. The Blackhawks have scored four 5-on-5 goals, a new season record. They scored more than two 5-on-5 goals just three times before Saturday. Encouraging sign.
7. Dylan Strome was a healthy scratch in Montreal, but he was flying into Toronto. Interim manager Derek King recognized him and promoted him to the top line and first power-play unit midway through the second period. Strome made six shot attempts (four on goal), won 10 of 16 faceoffs (62.5%) and finished with a season record of 18:51 on ice.
8. Jake McCabe and Connor Murphy found the back of the net. It was a Blackhawks defender’s third and fourth goals in his last six games after scoring just four in his first 21 games. Backend production is slowly starting to come.
9. Jonathan Toews opened the scoring just 1:53 in the game for his second goal in the last two bouts. He scored zero goals in his first 25 games. Go figure, right?
10. Henrik Borgstrom, who hit the top line in Montreal on Thursday and scored his first goal since October 24, has not played due to a non-COVID-19 illness. Reese Johnson also left the third period early with an apparent injury and has not returned.
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