The Blackhawks routed the Anaheim Ducks 8-3 at the United Center on Tuesday.
Here are 10 observations from the win:
1. Alex DeBrincat, Patrick Kane and Dylan Strome were reunited on the top line and boy did they take advantage of it. The three of them combined for 14 points (five goals, nine assists), nine of which came in the first period. When they were on the ice together at even strength, the Blackhawks led in shot attempts (19-10), shots on goal (13-7), scoring chances (11-6) and goals for (5-1), per Natural Stat Trick. Domination.
2. Kane had himself a special night. He had one goal and FIVE primary assists for six points, which set a new career-high. He had four points through his first seven shifts of the game. Absurd. Special player.
3. The Blackhawks led 5-0 after the first period. To put that lopsided frame into perspective: Chicago had 15 scoring chances and 11 slot shots, per Sportlogiq. Anaheim had one scoring chance and zero slot shots. Yes, you read that correctly. For your viewing pleasure, here's a highlight video of all five first-period goals:
4. Not only did Strome net a hat trick and finish with four points, but he also won his first eight faceoffs and finished with 11 wins and only three losses for a win percentage of 78.6, and later drew a penalty in the third period. A nice happy belated birthday performance for Strome, who turned 25 on Monday.
5. The Ducks went into this game ranked dead-last in 5-on-5 save percentage (.858) and 31st in 5-on-5 goal differential (-14) since the calendar flipped to February. I can assure you those numbers didn't get any better after a night like this.
6. Jonathan Toews ended a 13-game goal drought by scoring the 17th shorthanded goal of his NHL career. It was his first goal since Jan. 4 after he missed more than a month while in concussion protocol.
7. Marc-Andre Fleury improved to 12-1-0 in his last 13 starts against Anaheim. He went into this game with a 1.42 goals-against average, .948 save percentage and three shutouts in his previous 12 outings.
8. The Ducks made an interesting push in the second period, where they scored three straight goals, including twice in a span of 38 seconds. They outshot the Blackhawks 19-7 in that period and certainly had some momentum cooking but once Chicago made it 7-3, that pretty much ended Anaheim's chances of realistically getting back into the game.
9. Kirby Dach played on the wing and he was really good. He played with pace and energy, and made multiple impressive defensive plays. He's slowly starting to figure out who he can be as an NHL player.
10. The betting odds show it's basically a three-way tie for the Calder Trophy race between Detroit forward Lucas Raymond, Detroit defenseman Moritz Seider and Anaheim forward Trevor Zegras. If I were to handicap it right now, I think Seider should be the favorite followed by Zegras then Raymond.