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Three Hawks Hits: Injury Scares Galore For Blackhawks in Ugly Loss To Canadiens

Greg Boysen Avatar
February 15, 2023

The Chicago Blackhawks’ four-game trip through Canada stopped in Montreal for an “Original 6” matchup against the Canadiens. The effort we have seen on most nights wasn’t present on Tuesday night. For whatever reason, the Blackhawks lacked any serious push in their 4-0 loss.

The first period was not the most exciting period of hockey ever played. The teams combined for 12 shots on goal. The lone tally came on an early power play when Montreal defenseman Justin Barron’s shot from the point ticked off Colin Blackwell on its way to the back of the Blackhawks’ net.

The Blackhawks had a two-man advantage for 56 seconds early in the middle frame but were unable to even up the score. Joel Arima finished off an excellent passing play to double the Canadiens’ lead early in the third period. David Savard and Christian Dvorak both scored over the glove hand to ice this game.

Jaxson Stauber Hangs Tough in First NHL Loss

The Blackhawks had no intention of ever playing Jaxson Stauber to play at the NHL level this season. Instead, he was forced into duty and became the first netminder in franchise history to go 3-0-0 in his first three starts.

Stauber had another solid performance in his first career loss. He had to make a handful of tough saves late in the second period. The third period saw a trio of Montreal goals, primarily due to defensive breakdowns. However, both Savard and Dvorak beat Stauber high to his glove hand, which might have exposed a weakness for other teams to shoot for going forward.

Tough Night for Injuries

Jarred Tinordi returned from injury on Saturday night in Winnipeg. He made Blackhawks fans nervous when he fought Jets forward Adam Lowry in his first game back from a fractured jaw. He survived the scrap, but the injury bug caught up to him again in the first period.

Tinordi looked like he took a puck off the lower body in his fourth shift of the night. He hobbled to the bench and did not return to the ice, leaving the Blackhawks with five defensemen for the final 54 minutes.

Late in the second period Jason Dickson took a slap shot to the wrist/forearm area and winced in pain while heading right to the locker room. However, he was able to return to the game in the third period, so a bullet was dodged.

Stauber made everyone in a sweater hold their collective breath after the Arima goal in the final stanza. While stretched out to make a save, he was run into by MacKenzie Entwistle, who made hard contact with his neck and hand. Stauber remained on the ice for a few moments but stayed in the game.

Midway through the third period Max Domi took a hard hit along the boards. Andreas Anthasiou limped off the ice moments later, but both players stayed in the game. Entwistle left the bench later in the final frame as the nightmare period continued.

Not a Banner Night for Former Blackhawks and Habs

Domi had the two best seasons of his career playing in Montreal, where he scored 34 goals and 116 points in 153 games. His latest trip back to the Bell Centre was a night to forget. In addition to taking the rough ride into the boards late, he had no shots on goal, took an interference penalty, and only won 27% of his faceoffs.

Kirby Dach, who scored in the shootout to give the Canadiens the win in the first game between these squads, got another crack at the team that drafted him. He was relatively ineffective, too, with a shot goal, one hit, and just three faceoff wins in 11 tries.

Luke Richardson was back behind the bench in Montreal but on the visitors’ side for the first time. The fans gave him a nice ovation when he was acknowledged on the video board.

In the end, Richardson would have wanted to leave the Bell Centre with two points instead of a nice gesture from his former home crowd.

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