Blackhawks 0, Hurricanes 3 — Three Stars, Key Takeaways

Because of the NHL’s holiday restrictions, the Blackhawks got on their charter flight to Carolina early this morning, had their morning skate and then caught a quick nap before returning to the rink to face one of the best — and hottest — teams in the NHL. Their win on Tuesday night is their 13th in 14 starts and ninth in a row. With the Blackhawks coming in resting comfortably in dead last in the league, the final score lived up to about what we should have expected.

Star 1: Kyle Davidson

Another loss helps his draft board feel more comfortable with a top-three pick assured to the team with the worst record in the league. But GMKD gets our No. 1 star of the night because he also welcomed a beautiful daughter into the world earlier today as well.

Star 2: the Athanasiou-Dickinson-Lafferty line

It was pointed out a few times during the broadcast, but it was painfully apparent that the Blackhawks’ third line of Andreas Athanasiou, Jason Dickinson and Sam Lafferty was their most effective the entire night. They combined for one-third of the Blackhawks’ total shots on net as a team (8 of the team’s 24 total) and played with speed throughout. The team looked sluggish in the first period but this line was working. Dickinson won 7 of 13 faceoffs as well.

Star 3: Petr Mrazek

I gave him some crap on Twitter after giving up a not-so-great goal in the first period, but Mrazek got nothing from his offense and had to deal with pucks getting on him in a hurry all night. After allowing two goals against 23 shots in a first period in which he was under siege throughout, he settled in and gave up just one more. He finished the night with 46 saves against 49 shots.

Takeaways

  • This one will be a learning experience for Isaak Phillips. He was on the ice for all three of Carolina’s goals, the third of which came off a costly turnover. He’s young and needs to work his way through some of these tough nights, and this one will go in the memory bank. It was going to be a tough assignment in the first place; the Canes are one of the best teams in the league.
  • Carolina came into the game ranked 8th in the NHL at the dot (52.7 percent as a team). The Blackhawks reminded us they’re the best in the league with a really impressive performance in the faceoff circle. Chicago won 55 percent of the faceoffs in the game, led by Max Domi who won 11 of 16.
  • Caleb Jones filled up the box score: two shots on net, two takeaways, three hits, two blocked shots and… four penalty minutes.
  • The Blackhawks got boatraced in the first period; around 11 minutes into the game, the Hawks had as many shots on net as Carolina had goals, and the Canes were averaging one shot on net per minute. But the Blackhawks settled in very nicely in the second period and spent a lot more time in the offensive zone — of course, without anything to show for it on the scoreboard. But the 23-7 shot total that favored Carolina flipped and was 10-7 in favor of the Blackhawks in the second. The third period? Back to Carolina dominating (19-7).
  • I’m trying to figure out what Boris Katchouk does here. I’ll get back to you if I can figure that out before the game in St. Louis on Thursday…
  • written by

    Tab Bamford has been writing about the Chicago Blackhawks for almost two decades. He joined Bleacher Nation as the lead Blackhawks writer in May 2022. Tab is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers Association and is the author of two books about the Blackhawks: "100 Things Blackhawks Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die" (Triumph Books) and "Chicago Blackhawks: An Illustrated Timeline" (Reedy Press, 2021). Find him on Twitter/X/Instagram/Threads at @The1Tab

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