Kane, Blackhawks beat Lightning 3-2 in shootout
CHICAGO (AP) Patrick Kane skated in on Ben Bishop and showed off some fancy footwork as he approached the 6-foot-7 goalie. Bishop knew what was coming, and was still too late to stop it.
Oh-so-close is just the norm when the Chicago Blackhawks play the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Kane beat Bishop with a well-placed backhander in the shootout, and the Blackhawks stopped the Lightning's six-game winning streak with a 3-2 victory Tuesday night. Kane's 32nd career goal in the tiebreaker was enough for Corey Crawford, who denied each of Tampa Bay's three shooters.
''Crow's so good in the shootout, if one of us was able to get one, we're going to have a good chance to win or extend it,'' Kane said. ''It was a good feeling, for sure.''
Crawford stopped Ryan Callahan and Nikita Kucherov before Kane scored high on Bishop's glove side. Crawford then denied Steven Stamkos to seal the win.
Bishop said he watched Kane use a similar move in a 5-4 shootout victory at Ottawa on Oct. 30. Kane was unsuccessful on that night, but managed to put this one in the net.
''I had a feeling he might try it and he did and I got a piece of it and it went in,'' said Bishop, who made 37 saves in regulation and overtime.
Chicago won for the third time in four games. The Blackhawks had lost their last five games against the Lightning, with four of the defeats coming in a shootout or overtime.
Brad Richards and Marcus Kruger scored in regulation for the Blackhawks, who have won consecutive home games after dropping three in a row at the United Center.
''I think we've been pretty consistent,'' said Crawford, who had 25 saves before the shootout. ''We've had some tough games, some tough losses, but I think we're getting better and better every game.''
The Lightning were coming off a 4-3 shootout victory at Detroit on Sunday. Cedric Paquette scored in the first, and Kucherov had Tampa Bay's other goal in the third.
The tight matchup of contenders got more physical as the game wore on, and it took a toll on the players.
Tampa Bay center Tyler Johnson, who leads the team with 13 assists, departed after he was cross-checked in the back by defenseman Brent Seabrook in the third. Blackhawks defenseman Johnny Oduya also left in the final period with an apparent right leg injury.
There was no update on Johnson or Oduya after the game.
Kruger gave the Blackhawks a 2-1 lead when he tipped Niklas Hjalmarsson's long slap shot by Bishop 1:18 into the third. But the Lightning tied it at 2 when Stamkos made a nice pass through the crease to set up Kucherov's sixth goal at 9:53.
Bishop stopped Jonathan Toews on a 4-on-4 breakaway with 8:20 left in regulation, and Crawford made a pair of saves on Callahan in overtime.
''He's sharp, he's handling the puck well around the net, he's handling rebounds, he's very alert, very aware,'' Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said, praising Crawford's effort. ''In the shootout, he was outstanding. Give him credit for his preparation.''
The Blackhawks put a ton of pressure on Bishop right from the start, and the goalie kept the Lightning in the game with a series of outstanding saves. It was reminiscent of his previous start in Chicago, when he made 37 stops to help Tampa Bay rally for a 3-2 shootout victory last October.
Chicago outshot Tampa Bay 19-6 in the first, but the Lightning's second short-handed goal of the season was enough for a 1-0 lead at the first intermission. Paquette finished off a slow-developing 2-on-1 with Ondrej Palat, sliding a shot through Crawford's legs for his fourth goal at 4:35.
''There was some encouraging things, but you can't come out and play the way we did in the first period,'' Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper said.
The Blackhawks' pressure paid off in the second when Richards followed his own shot for his third goal at 9:13. He has six points in his last seven games after a slow start in his first season with Chicago.
NOTES: The game marked exactly one year since Stamkos broke his right leg in a 3-0 loss at Boston. Stamkos leads the team with 10 goals this season. ... It was the fourth short-handed goal allowed by the Blackhawks in 16 games this season. ... Tampa Bay scratched C Alex Killorn, RW Brett Connolly and D Mark Barberio. ... Blackhawks D Michal Rozsival played for the first time since a 3-2 loss at Toronto on Nov. 1. D David Rundblad joined injured forwards Patrick Sharp and Daniel Carcillo on the scratch list. ... It was the 500th career game for Toews.
Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap