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No joy for Hawks in salvaging one point in Capitals loss

CAPITALS 4,BLACKHAWKS 3

BLACKHAWKS 1 1 1 0 — 3

Washington 2 0 1 1 — 4

First Period—1, HAWKS, Leddy 3 (Hossa, Frolik), 4:46. 2, Washington, B.Gordon 3, 6:11 (sh). 3, Washington, Arnott 15 (Semin, Wideman), 19:06 (pp). Penalties—Knuble, Was (interference), :26; Johansson, Was (hooking), 5:53; Bickell, HAWKS (holding), 18:21.

Second Period—4, HAWKS, Kopecky 13, 3:09. Penalties—B.Gordon, Was (hooking), 8:09; Kopecky, HAWKS (boarding), 15:28; Seabrook, HAWKS, major (fighting), 19:41; Chimera, Was, major (fighting), 19:41.

Third Period—5, Washington, Laich 15 (Hendricks, Fehr), 6:23. 6, HAWKS, Toews 29 (Keith, Sharp), 19:21 (pp). Penalties—Johansson, Was (hooking), 18:10.

Overtime—7, Washington, Knuble 16 (Johansson, Wideman), 3:51. Penalties—None.

Shots on Goal—HAWKS 9-12-9-0—30. Washington 10-14-12-6—42.

Power-play opportunities—HAWKS 1 of 4; Washington 1 of 2.

Goalies—HAWKS, Crawford 26-13-5 (42 shots-38 saves). Washington, Holtby 8-2-2 (30-27).

Referees—Ian Walsh, Dave Jackson. Linesmen—Brian Mach, Anthony Sericolo.

A—18,398 (18,398). T—2:26.

Updated: September 24, 2012 6:25AM



WASHINGTON — If you’re looking for positives, at least the Blackhawks’ three-game losing streak didn’t come against teams they’re competing with in the Western ­Conference.

And at least they were able to find a way to get a point in their 4-3 overtime loss against the Washington Capitals on Sunday at the Verizon Center.

“We’ll take the point, but we certainly weren’t very good,” coach Joel Quenneville said. “[The Capitals] played well. They played hard. But I thought we had a little delay in our game. We were very generous in all the goals we gave them. We could have done a better job of defending those situations.”

After Mike Knuble scored the game-winner in overtime for the Capitals, Quenneville was asked what the main difference has been between the Hawks’ three-game skid and their confidence-building eight-game winning streak.

He couldn’t put a finger on it, saying “each game was different.” There was the awful start against the Florida Panthers, some hard-to-contain star performances against the Tampa Bay Lightning and in Washington ...

“We were overall carrying the play,” Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau said. “We played better than them. It might not happen the next time we play them, and they might not be tired from being on the road for eight or nine [days], but I thought [Sunday] that we were the better team.”

It doesn’t get any easier for the Hawks. Antti Niemi and the San Jose Sharks, who are 7-1-2 in their last 10 games, have been in Chicago waiting for the game tonight.

There is consolation in the point — every one is crucial in the tight Western Conference — but the Hawks needed help to get it.

Down 3-2, Capitals forward Magnus Johansson was called for hooking with 1:50 left in regulation. Jonathan Toews then scored with Corey Crawford (38 saves) pulled for an extra attacker with 38.5 seconds left.

Still, in overtime the Hawks, who also goals from Nick Leddy and Tomas Kopecky, didn’t get a shot on Braden Holtby (27 saves).

“We managed to get back in the game, but there is no reason to be satisfied with one point,” Toews said. “That’s two overtime losses in the last couple games. We can’t be happy just getting one point out of each of those games.

“If you look at the games ahead, if we keep getting to overtime, it doesn’t do us any good. It’s just ­getting beyond that point of satisfaction and finding a way to win. It sucks we couldn’t get two points.”

Each team allowed goals they shouldn’t have — such as Boyd Gordon’s momentum killing short-handed score in the first after Patrick Sharp failed to keep it in the attacking zone — but the tempo for the most part belonged to the Capitals.

The Hawks had good chances and did a decent of job of holding Alex Ovechkin off the scoresheet. But the Capitals, who had 42 shots, 21 blocks and 31 hits, just had more in them and extended their winning streak to eight games.

It just seemed like the Capitals won more individual battles.

“I agree with that,” Toews said. “We were just watching each other and no one was playing well enough away from the puck. You just can’t be watching the puck, watching a guy, whether we have it or not. ­Everybody has got to be anticipating and reacting.

“I don’t know if it was laziness or fatigue, but we weren’t moving our feet enough away from puck and that’s when you end up turning the puck over a lot all over the place when you’re not helping each ­other. That was the one big thing that stood out.”



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