Blackhawks remain competitive, but settle for just a point against the Predators

CHICAGO, IL - JANUARY 09: Nashville Predators left wing Filip Forsberg (9) controls the puck against Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith (2) during a game between the Nashville Predators and the Chicago Blackhawks on January 9, 2019, at the United Center in Chicago, IL. (Photo by Patrick Gorski/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

CHICAGO – As he continues through what’s appearing like another career year, Patrick Kane pointed out something about his Blackhawks’ team over the past few weeks.

They’ve been much more competitive, even during the New Year when the points haven’t been piling up like they might have hoped.

Since January 1st, the Blackhawks have been tied or ahead against the Bruins, Islanders, Penguins, and Flames coming into Wednesday night’s game against the Predators. All the team has to show for it is Sunday’s win over Pittsburgh, yet the feeling that things are going in the right direction is prevailing for All-Star right wing.

“We’re getting used to the way we need to play under Jeremy (Colliton), under the helm” said Kane during morning skate at the United Center on Wednesday. “We know the recipe for success and if we do that, we give ourselves a chance to win, even against some of these good teams in the league, some of these better teams.

“We’re giving ourselves a chance to win every night, which is pretty much all you can ask right now.”

That thought held up later Wednesday night, as the Blackhawks hosted the Central Division-leading Predators at the United Center. Once again, Colliton’s team was scrappy, rallying from a two-goal deficit to force overtime.

Yet the shot for two points escaped them as Nashville got a quick goal in the extra session to win it 4-3. It’s a point for the Blackhawks – just the third in 2019 -as the team continues to be competitive against the NHL’s best.

In fact getting a point would seem impressive considering the Blackhawks found themselves down 3-1 after Filip Forsberg’s goal with 3:34 left in the second period. But Jonathan Toews gave the Blackhawks a boost when he came up with a shorthanded goal with 20 seconds left in the second to get the Blackhawks within one.

With 2:21 to go in the game, Artem Anisimov got things to even with his eighth goal of the year to tie the game at three.

Getting to overtime got them the point, but a second was denied by Forsberg, who scored just a minute into overtime to give Nashville their 25th win of the season. It was another night where the Blackhawks hung with one of the NHL’s best, with hopes that they’ll be able to finish off games like this in the future.

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