Hockey Day in America: Chicago Blackhawks Hold Off Los Angeles Kings 3-2

Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Blackhawks were able to hold off a Kings comeback on Sunday to remain undefeated in regulation and improve to 27 points on the season. The Blackhawks jumped out to a fast 3-0 lead but Los Angeles wasn’t going to give in this time without a fight. The Kings powered back with two massive goals in the third period to make it a one goal game but their couldn’t get a third and ended up dropping yet another game in this dissapointing season.

Chicago currently has a 15-game point streak which was extended on Sunday. The streak their in right now is tied for the 2nd-longest in NHL history with the 1984-85 Edmonton Oilers. Ironically the Blackhawks get the Oilers later this week but will have broken the 2nd place streak by then if they haven’t lost it.

[RELATED: Sabres mount comeback but fall to Penguins 3-2]

The question we need to start asking ourselves now is will this fast start by the Blackhawks propel them to another Stanley Cup Finals appearance? The Anaheim Ducks are right behind the Blackhawks in the Western Conference with the Vancouver Canucks not far behind. But while the Blackhawks have some work to do before the lock up the Conference, they’re continuing to pull away from the rest of the Central division.

Nashville is the closest team to the Blackhawks in the Central 19 points in as many games as the Blackhawks have played. Barring some kind of massive meltdown, the Blackhawks will wrap up the Central in no time and move their focus on chasing the No. 1 seed in the West. Obviously all of this is a ways off, but the Blackhawks are the only team in the NHL left who haven’t lost in regulation and their errors all seem to be minimal.

Roy Emery proved he can carry a load today, but his two late goals are something to keep an eye on. With Corey Crawford likely suffering from a concussion, Emery is going to be the Blackhawks netminder moving forward which means he’ll be the last line of defense for the foreseeable future. However the Blackhawks offense showed they can give Emery enough run support to get by and their defensemen can hold the fort when things get close.

Even when in the final minute the Blackhawks sent a man to the box and were faced with a 6-on-4 penalty kill situation in a one goal game, the defense held up and Emery kept the win intact.

As for the Kings, things need to start turning around fast as only a single point separates them from Calgary and Colorado and two points are between Los Angeles and Columbus — otherwise known as the bottom of the Western Conference.

Everyone’s watching Chicago go and for good reason, as they showed that even when pushed hard late in games they refuse to fall.

Topics: Chicago Blackhawks, Los Angeles Kings, Nhl, Roy Emery

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