Blackhawks lose more ground in third straight loss

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Chicago Blackhawks' Jan Rutta (44) and Calgary Flames' Mikael Backlund collide during the second period of an NHL hockey game Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

by Scott King

The Blackhawks were in need of starting a winning streak now more than ever as they took on the Flames Tuesday night at home. They sat five points out off a playoff spot with four teams to pass, including the visiting Flames.

They lost to Calgary on the road Saturday despite having a 2-0 lead in the second period. Things again got off to a good start on Tuesday at the United Center as Alex DeBrincat scored his 19th of the season on the Blackhawks’ first power play.

The Hawks were also able to kill off a 5-on-3 Calgary power play later on in the period after Erik Gustafsson interfered with Micheal Ferland and Brent Seabrook was called for boarding Matthew Tkachuk.

Dougie Hamilton scored immediately in the second period at 1:10.

Ryan Hartman thought he scored later in the second period, but after a controversial double goal review, him and the Hawks weren’t credited with a goal.

Hartman seemed to be the last Hawk to touch a puck that slowly dribbled across the goal line past Flames goaltender Mike Smith. The first review determined the puck wasn’t kicked in, then… eventually, the second review determined that there was goaltender interference on the play.

Hartman didn’t believe he interfered on the play. “I’m just standing there, I get pulled over, puck goes in the net,” Hartman said. “I didn’t lunge at the goalie, I didn’t go into the goalie, so I don’t know. I fell backwards, so I don’t know.”

Michael Stone scored late in the third to make it 2-1 Flames. It was another controversial goal as Johnny Gaudreau’s stick was up high by the net and possibly made contact when the puck went in, but the officials determined it was a good goal. Gaudreau said following the game that it did hit his stick.

Sean Monahan scored an empty-net goal for the Flames to extend their lead to 3-1.

Patrick Kane scored with 5.1 seconds left in regulation to make it 3-2, but time expired and that would be the final score.

Jeff Glass made 20 saves on 22 shots in the loss.

Following the game, Chelsea Blogger asked head coach Joel Quenneville if he feels the video review process can kill a team’s momentum. “I think that’s what video replay does in games,” Quenneville said. “You could say whether they get it right or not, I still don’t know if that’s the best thing for slowing down the pace and the excitement of a building and things that can generate some enthusiasm for your own team.

“It slows you down, but that works both ways. You can have some positive developments on that same type of play.”

Standing not so tall

After Tuesday night’s loss, the Hawks fell to seven points out of a playoff spot.

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