Blackhawks Undefeated in Last Nine Games
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Corey Crawford has the Chicago Blackhawks on an early season roll.
Crawford stopped 27 shots and Artemi Panarin scored 25 seconds into overtime, leading the Blackhawks over the St. Louis Blues 2-1 on Wednesday night for their seventh straight win.
Crawford won his sixth consecutive game while improving to 15-5-5 against the Blues.
“He’s been phenomenal,” Chicago defenseman Brent Seabrook said. “He’s been the backbone.”
Crawford made 11 stops in the third period, including a sliding kick save on Vladimir Tarasenko while nursing a 1-0 lead.
“I’m in a good spot right now,” Crawford said. “I feel good. I’m reading plays (well). I’m patient when I have to be and aggressive when it’s time.”
Crawford is 7-3-1 this season.
“He has been outstanding, instrumental in winning most of these games,” Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said. “Again tonight, a couple of big saves.”
Panarin whipped a wrist shot from the slot past Jake Allen for his sixth goal of the season. The tally came just 1 second after St. Louis’ Alex Pietrangelo left the penalty box.
Allen said he never saw the shot.
“I just heard it hit the net,” Allen said. “It was a tough way to go.”
Panarin, a Russian-born winger, does not speak English. His usual interpreter, center Artem Anisimov, left the game in the second period with an upper-body injury.
“He’s day-to-day,” Quenneville said. “He’ll be all right.”
Marian Hossa pounced on the rebound of a shot by Gustav Forsling and followed it in for a 1-0 lead early in the second period. It was his seventh goal of the season and sixth in the last seven games.
“We’ve been in a lot of those games, close the whole way,” Quenneville said. “We seem to always find a way to get two points at the end of the night.”
Chicago has outscored opponents 30-15 during this nine-game run.
Allen made 28 saves for the Blues. He played well but has lost three of his last four and fell to 5-4-2.
This is the Blackhawks longest winning streak since they won 12 in a row from Dec. 29, 2015 to Jan. 19, 2016.
St. Louis is struggling after starting the season with three successive wins.
“We’re taking way too many penalties when the game is on the line,” coach Ken Hitchcock said. “We’re having to extend a lot of energy with a short bench. It is not a good recipe.”