CHICAGO — The Ducks scored three times in a span of only 3:26 in the second period against Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury on Tuesday, which on any other night would be cause for celebration. After all, Fleury has tormented the Ducks like no other goalie over the years.
But since the Ducks faced a six-goal deficit when their scoring binge began, it was nothing but a cheap consolation prize in a game that had slipped from their hands well before they put three shots behind Fleury. In fact, the Blackhawks had ripped it from the Ducks with a five-goal first period.
Chicago chased Ducks goalie John Gibson, who didn’t get much help from his flatfooted teammates, after 20 minutes en route to an 8-3 beatdown at the United Center. Patrick Kane had one goal and three assists in the first period for the Blackhawks, who scored five times on 13 shots.
Brandon Hagel’s goal 19 seconds into the second period extended Chicago’s lead to 6-0. The Ducks then countered with goals from Jakob Silfverberg, Trevor Zegras (power play) and Adam Henrique to cut their deficit to 6-3 with more than half of the game still to be played.
Any thoughts of an unlikely Ducks comeback faded when Kane recorded his fourth assist by setting up Dylan Strome’s second goal of the game, extending the Blackhawks’ lead to 7-3 at 14:50 of the second. Kane’s assist on Strome’s goal 1:38 into the game set an early tone.
Strome ended up with three goals for his second career hat trick. Kane had a goal and five assists.
Fleury went into the game with a 20-5-0 career record against the Ducks. He also had a 1.88 goals-against average, a .931 save percentage and three shutouts against them. Overall this season, he was 17-20-4 with a 2.91 goals-against average, a .908 save percentage and four shutouts.
More to come on this story.