Highlights: Blackhawks keep right on rolling
The Chicago Blackhawks’ power play garnered plenty of talk, plenty of stories, but not plenty of goals last season. It’s been that way for about two seasons, really. Obviously it didn’t stop them from winning a Stanley Cup last season, but the Blackhawks would still like to do more on it.
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On Tuesday, they liked what they saw on it.
Brent Seabrook scored the Blackhawks’ only power-play goal, a one-timer off a rebound in the second period, in the team’s 6-4 victory over the Washington Capitals. Yes, it was just one goal on four opportunities. But it was something; and the Blackhawks’ other power plays showed more movement and, more importantly, more shots.
“The power play’s better. It’s better than the last half of the year and into the playoffs,” coach Joel Quenneville said. “We were shooting earlier, and were trying to get action off that.”
There’s always room for improvement. Quenneville said it wouldn’t hurt to take a page out of the Capitals’ power-play book. Washington had the league’s best power play last season, and the Caps advantage went 3-for-6 on Tuesday night.
“They do a lot of good things,” Quenneville said. “Maybe we could pick up a couple things off that.”
Kid makes good
Connor Carrick couldn’t have drawn up his first game much better. The young defenseman from Orland Park, who made the Washington Capitals’ roster out of training camp, made his regular-season debut at the United Center, where he’d spent his share of nights watching the Chicago Blackhawks.
Entering the game, Carrick figured his emotions would be high.
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“I’ll probably try to drop it after the anthem and get into the game,” Carrick said after Tuesday’s pregame skate. “It’s incredible, really. I’m so honored to be in the lineup, to play where I’m going to play. It’s really special for me.”
Carrick wasn’t sure how much family he’d have at the UC, but he was certain he’d be unprepared for the onslaught.
“I came up with 10 tickets,” he said. “But I don’t think that’s going to be enough.”
Carrick logged 10 minutes, 46 seconds of ice time, with two hits.
Marian Hossa, who missed about a week of training camp with an upper-body injury, said he felt good coming out of Tuesday night’s game.
“So far, feeling good,” he said. “We’ll see tomorrow morning, but I’m pretty pleased.”
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Hossa was awarded an empty-net goal when, during his breakaway, he was hauled down before he could get a shot off.
“I think that’s the first goal in my career I didn’t have to score,” he said to laughs.
Michal Handzus left for part of the second period but returned in the third. He assisted on Brandon Saad’s goal. Quenneville said Handzus “is a tough kid. He finds a way to feel better quickly.”
The Blackhawks won 31 faceoffs; the Capitals won 29.
Patrick Sharp, Patrick Kane and Marian Hossa each had a team-high five shots on goal. Alex Ovechkin had a game-high nine.