After winning all three games in Chicago last season, the Winnipeg Jets magic in the Windy City ran out on Sunday. The Chicago Blackhawks ended the Jets short two game winning streak with a 3-1 victory at the United Center.
Marian Hossa, Teuvo Teravainen and Artemi Panarin scored goals for the Hawks while Chris Thorburn notched the only marker for the Jets in the loss.
The Blackhawks finally solved Jets goalie Michael Hutchinson who suffered his first ever regulation loss to the Blackhawks in what was his fifth career start against the Central Division rival. Hutchinson hasn’t won a start since October 29 and is now 0-7-1 in his last eight starts.
With an assist on an empty net goal Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane set a new franchise record with points in 22 consecutive games. The 22 game mark breaks the old record which was held by Bobby Hull who was in the building to witness the new record.
The Hawks appeared to open the scoring at the 12:50 mark. Hutchinson stopped the original shot from Winnipeg’s Ryan Garbutt and the puck went off the skate of Marcus Kruger and in behind Hutchinson. It was called a good goal on the ice but it was overturned on replay after it was ruled there was a distinct kicking motion and the game remained scoreless.
Late in the first period Brent Seabrook sent a bouncing puck towards the Jets goal. Hutchinson stopped the first shot but Hossa on the doorstep swept in the rebound. Jonathan Toews had the other assist. The Blackhawks had the games first goal and this time it counted.
With less than a minute left in the period Bryan Bickell ran over Dustin Byfuglien who was looking the other way. Byfuglien got up and went right after Bickell. There was clearly contact with Byfuglien’s head but Big Buff received the only penalty, a two minute minor for roughing. He left the game briefly to go to the Jets dressing room but re-appeared a short time later. The shots were 11 aside in the first period.
Early in period two Toby Enstrom took the puck to the Hawks net. The referee vehemently signalled no goal as play continued. When the whistle went a minute later they went back and looked at the replay and the puck had indeed went into the net. Thorburn was credited with his fourth goal of the season with Enstrom nabbing the only assist and it was tied at one. The Jets led in the shot department in the middle frame 12-9.
The Hawks came out flying to start the third period and just 21 seconds in Teravainen squeezed the sharp angle shot between Hutchinson and the goal post. His fifth goal of the season turned out to be the game winner and was assisted by Hossa and Duncan Keith.
Kane extended his point streak with just 1:46 to spare as he gloved it over to Artemi Panarin who found the empty net to seal the Hawks victory.
Jets head coach Paul Maurice used the same lineup for the second night in a row with Adam Pardy, Joel Armia and Paul Postma all healthy scratches. The Jets will be back in Chicago on Friday but are now off until Thursday when they’ll host the Columbus Blue Jackets.