for this game

Blackhawks break out early, hold on late vs. Blue Jackets

Dec 17, 2006 - 4:34 AM
COLUMBUS, Ohio (Ticker) -- Coach Denis Savard had his Chicago Blackhawks playing the offensive style of hockey he craves early. In the end, he had them holding on for dear life.

Martin Havlat, Jeff Hamilton and Tuomo Ruutu each had a goal and an assist and defenseman Duncan Keith set up three tallies as the Blackhawks recorded a huge first period before hanging on for a 6-4 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Following their first regulation loss in nine games under the helm of Savard on Thursday, the Blackhawks came out with a purpose against the Blue Jackets, scoring five times in the opening period to build a 5-1 lead.

The lone tally for Columbus in the session was scored by Rick Nash, who netted his fourth in as many games and the 100th of his career.

"It's great, it's a nice milestone to hit," Nash said. "It's nice to be part of that club."

However, Columbus regrouped during the first intermission and rallied for three goals in the middle session to pull within 5-4.

"We played well in our first period and got out to a pretty good lead," Havlat said. "Then we stopped doing some of the little things and they got back in the game."

"It might be better being up 5-1 going into the third than having 40 minutes left to play because you have that feeling of trying to get through the rest of the game where as you want to continue to finish your checks and do all the small things," Keith added. "Sometimes it's tough."

Clinging to the slim advantage, Chicago got some breathing room in the third period from defenseman Lasse Kukkonen, who converted a pass from Havlat during a 2-on-1 for his fourth goal of the season.

Denis Arkhipov notched a goal and an assist and Bryan Smolinski also tallied for the Blackhawks, who have won three of four.

David Vyborny scored one goal and set up two others and Fredrik Modin added a tally and an assist for Columbus, which lost its second straight following a five-game winning streak.

"I think in the first period, every mistake we made ended up in our net," Blue Jackets coach Ken Hitchcock said. "We made some puck errors today and paid for it. They have some skilled forwards and they got bounces that went their way. ... We made too many mistakes early in the game on the other side of our red line, and that ended up costing us."

Hamilton started the first-period onslaught for Chicago, extending his goal-scoring streak to three games at 1:52. Havlat doubled the lead less than seven minutes later, beating goaltender Fredrik Norrena with a wrist shot from the left faceoff circle for his fourth goal in five contests.

"Just a great pass from Duncan, who had a great night," Havlat said. "I was able to get it on net and in."

Arkhipov made it 3-0 three minutes later, getting to his own rebound in the slot after Norrena attempted a diving poke and gliding to below the right circle before depositing the puck into a vacant net.

"We definitely came out flat," Nash said. "We can't be coming out like that. ... We have to come out with more energy."

Ruutu netted his third goal in four games with 6:39 remaining in the period while on the power play and Smolinski completed the outburst with 27 seconds to go by streaking down the slot and beating Norrena to the glove side.

"They came out with more energy than we did and got those goals and put us behind early," Norrena said. "I have to be better and give us a chance to win. We need to compete harder and good things will happen."

With Ty Conklin making his debut with Columbus in relief of Norrena - who made just 11 saves - at the start of the second session, the Blue Jackets got back in the game. Vyborny stretched his goals streak to three games 62 seconds in, Modin cashed in during a power play at 9:34 and Alexander Svitov buried a rebound less than two minutes later.

"We came back and played well," Modin said. "It's tough to fight back, and we weren't happy with our start, but we managed to snap out of it in the second and play a solid second period."

"I thought we had too much gap in the neutral zone," Savard said. "They were able to attack us with lots of speed. It's a mentality we have to get away from. We want to be a team that pressures, and we got away from that in the second."

But Kukkonen dashed the Blue Jackets' hopes with 7:15 remaining, firing a shot past Conklin from the slot for a 6-4 advantage.

With his career-high three assists, Keith also set a personal best of three points.

"I don't think it was my best game," he said. "I did get three points, but I think they came just smacking it out of our end, more or less."








  • ------------------------------------
    Chicago
    5 0 1 --6
    Columbus 1 3 0 --4
    ------------------------------------

    FIRST PERIOD -- Scoring: 1, Chicago, Jeff Hamilton 10 (Jassen
    Cullimore, Tuomo Ruutu), 1:52. 2, Chicago, Martin Havlat 11 (Duncan
    Keith, Peter Bondra), 8:39. 3, Chicago, Denis Arkhipov 3 (Martin
    Lapointe, Duncan Keith), 11:35. 4, Chicago, Tuomo Ruutu 9 (power

    Dec 16 9:33 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 6
    COLUMBUS 4
    3RD PRD: CHI - LASSE KUKKONEN 4 (MARTIN HAVLAT, DENIS ARKHIPOV) 12:46

    Blackhawks vs. Blue JacketsDec 16 9:22 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    CHICAGO 5 0 5
    COLUMBUS 1 3 4 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: CHI - JEFF HAMILTON 10 (JASSEN CULLIMORE, TUOMO RUUTU) 1:52
    CHI - MARTIN HAVLAT 11 (DUNCAN KEITH, PETER BONDRA) 8:39
    CHI - DENIS ARKHIPOV 3 (MARTIN LAPOINTE, DUNCAN KEITH) 11:35
    CHI - (PP) TUOMO RUUTU 9 (

    Dec 16 8:41 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 5
    COLUMBUS 4
    2ND PRD: COB - ALEXANDER SVITOV 3 (RON HAINSEY, DAVID VYBORNY) 11:31

    Blackhawks vs. Blue JacketsDec 16 8:26 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 5
    COLUMBUS 3
    2ND PRD: COB - (PP) FREDRIK MODIN 9 (RICK NASH, SERGEI FEDOROV) 9:35

    Blackhawks vs. Blue JacketsDec 16 8:21 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 5
    COLUMBUS 2
    2ND PRD: COB - DAVID VYBORNY 7 (SERGEI FEDOROV, ANDERS ERIKSSON) 1:02

    Blackhawks vs. Blue JacketsDec 16 8:09 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    CHICAGO 5 5
    COLUMBUS 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: CHI - JEFF HAMILTON 10 (JASSEN CULLIMORE, TUOMO RUUTU) 1:52
    CHI - MARTIN HAVLAT 11 (DUNCAN KEITH, PETER BONDRA) 8:39
    CHI - DENIS ARKHIPOV 3 (MARTIN LAPOINTE, PETER BONDRA) 11:35
    CHI - (PP) TUOMO RUUTU 9 (

    Dec 16 7:48 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 5
    COLUMBUS 1
    1ST PRD: CHI - BRYAN SMOLINSKI 7 (KARL STEWART, DUNCAN KEITH) 19:33

    Blackhawks vs. Blue JacketsDec 16 7:48 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 4
    COLUMBUS 1
    1ST PRD: COB - (PP) RICK NASH 11 (FREDRIK MODIN, DAVID VYBORNY) 16:13

    Blackhawks vs. Blue JacketsDec 16 7:44 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 4
    COLUMBUS 0 5:48 LEFT, 1ST PRD

    Blackhawks vs. Blue JacketsDec 16 7:33 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 3
    COLUMBUS 0
    1ST PRD: CHI - DENIS ARKHIPOV 3 (MARTIN LAPOINTE, PETER BONDRA) 11:35

    Blackhawks vs. Blue JacketsDec 16 7:29 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 2
    COLUMBUS 0
    1ST PRD: CHI - MARTIN HAVLAT 11 (DUNCAN KEITH, PETER BONDRA) 8:39

    Blackhawks vs. Blue JacketsDec 16 7:23 PM


  • NHL
    CHICAGO 1
    COLUMBUS 0
    1ST PRD: CHI - JEFF HAMILTON 10 (JASSEN CULLIMORE, TUOMO RUUTU) 1:52

    Blackhawks vs. Blue JacketsDec 16 7:12 PM