With 6:34 left to play in the third period of Sunday night’s game, defenseman Chis Campoli gave the Chicago Blackhawks a 2-1 lead with with his first goal since coming over in a trade.
It was a goal the would prove to be the game-winner and give the Blackhawks a much needed regulation win, even though the team wasn’t at their best.
“It wasn’t the prettiest win, but I thought we did what we had to and I still thought we deserved to win,” defenseman Duncan Keith said. “We had a lot of chances, we worked hard. It was a good win in regulation.”
The win gave the Blackhawks two points, but just as important as that, Campoli’s goal meant that the Phoenix Coyotes wouldn’t take any points from the game.
The Coyotes sit in fourth place, in the much coveted final playoff position with some sort of home ice advantage. The win pulled the Blackhawks to within three points of the Coyotes, and sitting just one spot back.
“As of late we’ve kind of stumbled, and teams have caught us, breathing down our necks,” Campoli said. “To get the two points in regulation, it’s crucial coming down the stretch and we knew how big a game it was.”
After winning eight consecutive games, the Blackhawks have gone 2-1-2 and have 10 games left on their schedule. They’ll need to play well down the stretch if they want to have a chance at defending their Stanley Cup Championship. Because while the Blackhawks are only three points out of fourth, they only have a two-point lead over the 10th place Calgary Flames.