Blackhawks’ extra-time woes continue with SO loss to Sharks
BY SETH GRUEN Staff Reporter February 2, 2014 12:36AM
Chicago Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford (50) blocks a shot against San Jose Sharks center Tommy Wingels (57) during the first period of an NHL hockey game in San Jose, Calif., Saturday, Feb. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)
Updated: February 2, 2014 8:24PM
SAN JOSE, Calif. — The Blackhawks spent a lot of time in the offensive zone Saturday against the Sharks, looking dominant at times. But failing to convert those chances led to 2-1 shootout loss at the SAP Center.
The Sharks won the shootout 3-1. In 19 overtime sessions this season, the Blackhawks are without a goal.
“You got to try and find a way,” said Hawks goalie Corey Crawford, who didn’t make a save in the shootout. “Not making a save in a shootout doesn’t really give you a chance to win. It’s a tough loss again.
“We played well, and we had our chances to win, a couple of chances late. Our guys were doing a great job of not allowing many second chances.”
Joe Pavelski gave the Sharks a 1-0 lead on a short-handed goal at 6:10 of the third period. Brandon Saad tied the score with a power-play goal at 7:13. Saad has five points (three goals, two assists) through three games on the trip.
With about 7:30 left in the game, Corey Crawford stopped a Brad Stuart shot that looked like the Sharks’ best opportunity to win in regulation. Crawford actually lucked out because he wasn’t looking at Stuart when he shot the puck. It just happened to hit his leg pad.
The Hawks’ best opportunity came when Marcus Kruger nearly scored on a rebound with 2:57 left in the third period. But Kruger fell into the net, and his shot was stopped by Sharks goaltender Antti Niemi.
The Hawks played the majority of the first period in the offensive zone but were outshot 11-8.
The fourth line, which Quenneville has praised all trip, continued to play well. It spent several shifts in the offensive zone, and Brandon Bollig, playing in his 100th NHL game, drew the Sharks’ only penalty of the period.
The Hawks went on the power play twice in the second period but failed to muster much offense. They finished 1-for-4 with the man advantage. The Sharks went 0-for-4 and have gone 0-for-16 in the last six games.
Hawks coach Joel Quenneville said the game had a playoff feel.
Both teams hit hard and gave the other little space, though the Hawks still outshot the Sharks 39-30.
“Both teams played hard, and it was a fast-paced game and checking was at a premium tonight,” Quenneville said. “Getting some space was hard to come by.”