The Chicago Blackhawks started the 2013-2014 season off on a positive note as they defeated the Washington Capitals 6-4 Tuesday night. The Blackhawks held a ceremony prior to the game showcasing and lifting their banners. The team seemed to be pumped up after the ceremony and came out flying on the ice. Both teams provided a big offensive attack throughout the night and both goalies made some nice saves to keep their teams in the game. Ultimately, it was the Blackhawks who came out on top with the win.
Here are a few notes from tonight's game:
- Blackhawks forward Brandon Bollig opened the scoring with his first career NHL regular season goal. Bollig, also known as Operation Rain Drop, has continued to improve over the last few weeks and was well deserving of a spot on the roster.
- Blackhawks defenseman Johnny Oduya scored the game winner. Oduya celebrated his 32nd birthday today.
- Forward Mikhail Grabovski recorded his first career hat trick as he led the way for the Capitals tonight.
- The Blackhawks gave up three power play goals, but came up with their biggest stops of the night when they faced a 5-on-3 late in the third period.
- Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford stopped 28 of 32 shots, including some big saves near the end of the game.
- Forwards Brandon Saad and Michal Handzus connected on a beautiful give-and-go for the Blackhawks as Saad found the back of net. Saad was named the first star of the game as he scored one goal and added two assists on the night.
- Patrick Kane, Brent Seabrook and Marian Hossa also scored for the Blackhawks. Alexander Ovechkin scored the other goal for the Capitals.
- The Blackhawks won the shot advantage at 34-32 and were ahead 31-29 in the face off circle.
Overall, this game was an offensive battle with 10 total goals scored. The Blackhawks got great production from many guys tonight as the team put forth an all-around win.
The penalty killing unit was a cause for concern early in the game for the Blackhawks, but they stepped up when it mattered the most. In other news, Michal Handzus left the game briefly after getting hit hard into the boards. He later returned and set up Saad with a nice pass for a backhand goal.
The Blackhawks will now have a few days off before hosting the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday.
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