Sharks beat Blackhawks 4-3 in shootout for 8th straight win
CHICAGO — Kevin Labanc scored the deciding goal in the fourth round of a shootout and the San Jose Sharks beat the Chicago Blackhawks 4-3 on Monday night for their eighth straight victory.
Labanc almost pulled to a stop in front of Chicago goalie Anton Forsberg, faked and then lifted in a nifty backhand. Logan Couture also connected in the tiebreaker for the surging Sharks, whose winning streak is their longest in seven years.
Chicago’s Patrick Sharp tied it at 3 with 2:22 left in the third period with a shot from the slot that hit Martin Jones’ blocker and then tumbled into the net. Tomas Hertl had put the Sharks ahead 3-2 just 1:57 earlier with his 21st goal.
San Jose’s Evander Kane scored his 28th goal — his third in two games and eighth in 13 since being acquired from Buffalo at the trade deadline. Marcus Sorensen also had a goal for the Sharks.
Rookie forward Alex DeBrincat scored his 26th goal and had an assist, and Connor Murphy scored his second for the last-place Blackhawks, who have lost six of seven.
Jones made 28 saves through overtime and stopped three of four Blackhawks in the shootout. Forsberg blocked 35 shots through overtime.
Chicago center Victor Ejdsell made his NHL debut and started the game on a line between Patrick Kane and Brandon Saad. The 6-foot-5, 22-year-old Swede was acquired from Nashville on Feb. 26 in a trade that sent Ryan Hartman to the Predators.
Sorensen opened the scoring 9:15 in, sliding a one-timer under Forsberg’s right skate from the edge of the crease after taking Jannik Hansen’s centering pass.
DeBrincat and Murphy scored 1:18 apart late in the first to give Chicago a 2-1 lead.
DeBrincat fired in a rebound with 4:28 left in the period — and 12 seconds after a Chicago power play had lapsed — to cap a rush. Jones blocked Vinnie Hinostroza’s shot from the left circle with his shoulder, but DeBrincat jumped on the loose puck just beyond the right side of the crease.
Murphy then connected on a shot from the right point as San Jose defenseman Brenden Dillon screened Jones.
Evander Kane tied it at 2 with 3:21 left in the second, finishing a breakaway set up by Chicago defenseman Brent Seabrook’s turnover inside the San Jose blue line.
Seabrook’s soft shot landed on Mikkel Boedker’s stick, then Boedker fed the puck to Evander Kane, who streaked in alone and beat Forsberg with a shot that trickled between the goalie’s legs.
Jones made a point-blank save on Artem Anisimov’s tip during a Chicago power play about eight minutes into the third to keep it tied. He denied Ejdsell and Hinostroza from the doorstep midway through the period.
After outbattling Chicago defenseman Erik Gustafsson on the right boards, Hertl sprinted to the net and beat Forsberg on the glove side to give San Jose a 3-2 lead with 4:19 left. Sharp then tied it.
In overtime, Jones made a diving, close-in save on Patrick Kane with 1:20 left. Forsberg made a pad save on Evander Kane on a breakaway with 22 seconds left.