By Chris Block
Returning to their home ice for the first time since a 6-1 drubbing of the Arizona Coyotes on January 20th, the Blackhawks faced off with the same desert sons on Monday night in front of 21,337 fans, the 302nd consecutive sellout crowd at United Center.
Marian Hossa repeated his efforts from Sunday’s win in St. Louis, again posting 2 goals in this, the Blackhawks first home game in 20 days, on Marian Hossa bobblehead night nonetheless.
Hossa was in top form Monday. The relentless back-checking, puck-hounding, puck-sniping beast that he has earned him a reputation as one of the game’s premier all-around performers put in a near perfect effort on his end.
But his two goals were not enough on Monday, as a late second period Patrick Kane unsportsmanlike penalty allowed Arizona to check back into a game they were largely being neutralized within up to that point. And a miraculous Mike Smith goal line stand with 16.3 seconds left in overtime kept the Blackhawks from returning to Chicago in winning fashion.
Lucas Lessio and Antoine Vermette beat Antti Raanta with different slick maneuverings in the shootout, while Patrick Kane was the lone Blackhawk to convert on Smith.