Blackhawks gut one out but lose to Anaheim 3-2 in a shootout - FOX 35 News Orlando

Blackhawks gut one out but lose to Anaheim 3-2 in a shootout

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

It would have been better for the Blackhawks if they could have gutted out a victory. Instead the Anaheim Ducks ran their win streak versus Chicago to five with a 3-2 shootout decision on Friday night.

Considering everything, capturing one point on home ice was an improvement for the Hawks. Their effort was there under difficult circumstances.

The Ducks had dropped three of their last four games but were off since Tuesday.

Besides being a problem for the Hawks for quite awhile, Anaheim came into last night's contest with a scheduling edge which was a big factor.

Since the 2005 campaign the Ducks have a 21-7-4 record versus Chicago. This season Anaheim is the only team in the NHL that still hasn't lost in regulation at home.

The Ducks have two of the best big scoring forwards in Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf, and they ride those two hard. The duo always seems to be on the ice and last night each had over 22 minutes of playing time.

Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews, playing in the second of back to back games had even more ice time.

The Blackhawks tandem skated for close to 25 minutes each.

The biggest difference on Friday was Perry and Getzlaf both scored a goal while Kane and Toews did not.

The Ducks did a good job of playing a simple game and scored by getting traffic in front of Antti Raanta.

The Blackhawks came back from a deficit two times as they had to battle for a tie. Ben Smith and Kris Versteeg were the Chicago goal scorers. The Hawks looked a step slow at times, especially some defenders, but it has been a hectic stretch.

Raanta played as well as his counterpart, Jonas Hiller, until the shootout.

It appears Raanta could have a bright future but would have been better off with more seasoning in Rockford.

It is what it is for now and so far Raanta has done a good job as a backup.

On the injury front, Michael Kostka is rehabbing in Rockford and Bryan Bickell is set to start skating next week.

It isn't a surprise there hasn't been a whisper as to when Nikolai Khabibulin will be ready to return. Khabibulin never seems to rush back from injury. So Raanta may be able to soak up big city living in Chicago for awhile longer.

The Blackhawks were more determined when playing the Ducks than in the previous two losses at the hands of lesser opponents. They have a great chance of snapping their three game losing streak as the Panthers pay a visit on Sunday.

Playing Florida (8-16-5) could be just what the doctor ordered for a Hawks team that looks like it needs to recharge its batteries.

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