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10 observations: Decimated Blackhawks snap losing streak with win over Flames

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The Chicago Blackhawks snapped their five-game winless skid with a 4-3 win over the Calgary Flames on Sunday at the United Center.

Here are 10 observations from the win:

1. Connor Bedard was placed on injured reserve on Saturday due to a fractured jaw. Same with Nick Foligno, who's dealing with a fractured left finger. The Blackhawks have nine players on IR right now. They're scraping together a lineup every night at this point.

2. The Blackhawks went with 11 forwards and seven defensemen because they didn't have a 12th forward. Rem Pitlick, who was acquired from Pittsburgh on Saturday for a conditional seventh-round pick in 2026, was supposed to play but he ran into travel issues due to weather, so he didn't make it on time.

3. Colin Blackwell, who was elevated to the first line, was a lightning rod in this game. He scored two goals, added an assist, and registered a game-high nine shot attempts, one of which came on a shorthanded opportunity in the first period. Easily his best game as a Blackhawk.

4. The Blackhawks scored two goals in 2:40 during the second period, which turned the momentum in their favor. Nikita Zaitsev's go-ahead goal to put them up 3-2 went off a Calgary defender's skate and in, essentially negating Calgary's second goal which went off Connor Murphy's skate and in.

5. All things considered, the Blackhawks played a very solid game. Just a scrappy, grind-it-out kind of effort. And they won for the first time on Sunday this season after going 0-8-0 in their previous eight games.

6. Zach Sanford made his team debut after he was claimed off waivers from Arizona. He skated on the third line and was on the second power-play unit despite having no practices with the team. He wasn't too impactful, but it was hard not to notice how big he is at 6-foot-4, 207 pounds. He did have an assist on Blackwell's power-play goal in the third period.

7. The Blackhawks' first power-play unit was Ryan Donato, Philipp Kurashev, Cole Guttman, Lukas Reichel and Kevin Korchinski. Sanford and Zaitsev were on the second unit, if you're wondering how thin Chicago's roster is at the moment. I honestly didn't think the power play looked terrible.

8. Going into Sunday, Petr Mrazek was 6-5-0 with a 2.39 goals-against average and .931 save percentage in 11 appearances at home this season. He's 3-8-1 with a 4.06 goals-against average and .876 save percentage on the road. He came up big in the third period, especially on the penalty kill midway through the frame to keep it a 3-2 score. Calgary's third goal from a poor angle obviously shouldn't go in; Mrazek hasn't given up many softies this season.

9. With Foligno out and Seth Jones still on the shelf, Kurashev wore the third "A." Jason Dickinson and Connor Murphy were the other alternate captains. A nice little reward for Kurashev, who scored his eighth goal of the season, tying him for fourth on the team.

10. Joey Anderson (shoulder), Jones (shoulder) and Taylor Raddysh (groin) each skated on their own after practice on Saturday. They've been on the ice a few times before then, which indicates they're probably getting close to returning to practice. Tuesday's game vs. Edmonton might be too soon for a return to the lineup since Monday is a scheduled off day but who knows at this point. The Blackhawks are desperate.

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