Stalberg Saves Blackhawks In Shootout

The Chicago Blackhawks took an early lead, scoring twice in the first six minutes of the game. The Blue Jackets retaliated scoring a goal in each period and taking the lead in the third. A late goal for the Hawks in the third period tied the game before Viktor Stalberg scored the game winning goal in a shootout.

Viktor Stalberg had the only goal in the shootout and Corey Crawford made 31 saves in the Chicago Blackhawks’ 4-3 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday night.

The two points were precious for the defending Stanley Cup champs. The Blackhawks are eighth in the Western Conference, the last position for a playoff spot.

Patrick Kane had a goal and an assist and Brent Seabrook and Bryan Bickell also scored for Chicago.

Derick Brassard, Maksim Mayorov and Samuel Pahlsson scored for the Blue Jackets, Anton Stralman had career highs with three assists and points and Antoine Vermette added two assists.

Going sixth overall, Stalberg improved to 2 for 2 in shootouts this season.

Stalberg swooped in on Mathieu Garon, faked and stuck a backhand into the net.

Both teams were missing their leading goal scorers.

The Blackhawks were without Patrick Sharp, who has 34 goals. He missed his fifth game with a knee injury, but will be re-evaluated Sunday and is expected to play next week.

The Blue Jackets were without captain Rick Nash, who has 32, for the second straight night. He’s day to day with an undisclosed lower-body injury. They also did not have top goalie Steve Mason, who sustained a minor injury in a 4-3 overtime loss at Washington on Thursday night. Garon had 23 saves.

In a wild, entertaining third period filled with end-to-end rushes, the Blue Jackets took a 3-2 lead with 6:38 left in regulation when Pahlsson redirected yet another Stralman shot from the point.

But just over 90 seconds later, Chicago squared things again when Bickell’s seemingling innocent slap shot from just inside the offensive zone ricocheted off Stralman’s stick and eluded Garon.

In the overtime, Garon stymied Marian Hossa on a 2-on-1 and also made a kick save on Stalberg.

Unable to score on their last 42 opportunities with a man advantage, the Blue Jackets finally broke through on a two-man advantage. Brassard found the net with a hard, rising slap shot from the top of the left circle to tie it at 2 after the club went 11 full games without scoring on the power play.

The Blackhawks gave them plenty of chances to end the drought, picking up seven penalties through the first two periods.

Early on it appeared the Blackhawks were going to have an easy night. Just 2:41 in, Kane cruised in on the left wing on a 2 on 1 and his hard wrister provided his 26th goal of the season. Just seconds after a Columbus flurry, Chris Campoli sprung Kane with a long pass off the side glass to set up the rush.

Just over 3 minutes later Chicago – with the NHL’s second most productive power play – made it 2-0 when Seabrook converted a seeing-eye, cross-ice pass from Kane.

The lead was cut in half midway through the period when Mayorov redirected Stralman’s shot from the end of the blue line. Mayorov, who turned 22 earlier this week, had his stick extended at shoulder height to deflect the puck past Crawford. The Russian had the only score in a shootout Tuesday night in a 3-2 victory over Florida.

NOTES: Kane has 10 goals and 18 assists in 24 games vs. Columbus. … The Blackhawks are 17-1-2 when Kane has multiple points this season, and are 59-8-10 in his four-year NHL career. … Stralman was playing his second game in as many nights after missing 15 games with a knee injury.

Copyright 2011 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

  • A win's a win

    We’ll take the 2 points but geeeez it isn’t getting any easier!!! Would’ve been nice if the Blues couldn’t helped us by beating the Flames.


    That Blues game was, actually, pretty good too. It took, oh, someone’s 1000 career point to put the Flames ahead.

    Corey Crawford did everything except time travel to erase two of the goals. That was trial by fire

    Son of Hjalmar needs to stop hitting people with his stick!

  • MadSam

    I agree with both of the above posts, it’s gotta get easier!! But to be totally honest, that game had a few questionable calls especially that high sticking goal that helped the CBJ. It looked as if both the puck and stick blade were above the cross bar of the net when they made contact and he redirected it. Hats off and much respect to COREY CRAWFORD…HELLUVA SEASON BUDDY, let’s take it all the way. With the playoff teams changing daily, each and every game matters for the Chicago BlackHawks, we need the 2 points. As for Sharpie, keep his ass on the bench until the first playoff game…ONLY IF HE’S 100% OKAY EVEN THEN, YOU DON’T WANNA RUIN THIS GUY’S CAREER/LIFE, HE HAS ALOT OF BOTH LEFT.

  • CH

    You can call it a lucky win but one thing the Hawks lack is a consistent 3rd line that’s when guys like Ladd, Big Buff and Versteeg wer’e so valueable. I think Quenville is a terrific coasch but STAN BOWMAN has got to go the guy is not a GM


    CH, yeah, I can see your frustration.
    Hjalmarsson is a young player and Bowman rolled the dice with him. Turcco is on the bench, but the ‘hawks can coach up/ prop up a goalie (St. Louis, cannot).

    Atlanta is, currently, playing for pride.
    Maybe, Bowman could’ve kept Versteeg or Ladd, but, then, we might not have been able to keep either Niemi or Hjlamarsson (do I ever spell that name right?) And, that would have left two rookie goalies at the start of the season.
    Crawford is a maniac!

    Wait ’til Sharp returns. The guy is an “A+” assistant “C.”


    Yep, MadSam,

    The announcers say the call on the ice for above the crossbar his hard to overturn.
    Columbus might’ve been diving in the second. The refs ate the whistle in the third period. They managed a pretty decent game considering.

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