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Blackhawks go 8-3-3 in December

by Mackenzie McCluer / Chicago Blackhawks
After wrapping up their most successful circus trip to date on a six-game win streak, the Chicago Blackhawks started December by posting three one-goal losses followed by three blow-out wins. By the end of the month, in which the team went 8-3-3, the Hawks had scored five-plus goals an NHL-most 17 times this season and stood atop league standings with 63 points.

Brandon Dillon of the Dallas Stars upends Andrew Shaw along the boards on Dec. 3. Despite outshooting the Stars 50-18 and scoring three goals in the second period, the Blackhawks lost 4-3 to close out their their six-game winning streak. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

sharpie celebrating
Patrick Sharp celebrates alongside Jonathan Toews, Duncan Keith and Andrew Shaw after scoring against the Florida Panthers in the first period on Dec. 8, 2013, at the United Center. Sharp added two assists for his sixth multi-point game of the season in the 6-2 victory over Florida. (Photo by Bill Smith/Chicago Blackhawks)

Brandon Bollig takes a swig of Gatorade during warm-ups before a game against the Philadelphia Flyers on Dec. 11, 2013. The Blackhawks scored a season-high seven goals against the Flyers, marking the team's third consecutive game of five or more goals, for a final score of 7-2. (Photo by Bill Smith/Chicago Blackhawks)

Brandon Saad stick-handles the puck past John-Michael Liles of the Toronto Maple Leafs on Dec. 14, 2013, at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. With goaltenders Corey Crawford and Nikolai Khabibulin both sidelined with injuries, the Blackhawks were backstopped by rookie netminders Antti Raanta and Kent Simpson. Raanta turned aside 20 of 25 shots before being relieved by Simpson for the remainder of the 7-2 loss. (Photo by Graig Abel/NHLI via Getty Images)

Patrick Sharp stretches out before a game against the Los Angeles Kings on Dec. 15, 2013, at the United Center. The Blackhawks scored on the power play, on the penalty kill and at even strength for a 3-1 win over the Kings. (Photo by Bill Smith/Chicago Blackhawks)

raanta kruger seabrook
Goaltender Antti Raanta defends the net against the Kings on Dec. 15. Raanta made 21 saves on 22 shots for his sixth victory of the season. (Photo by Chase Agnello-Dean/Chicago Blackhawks)

shaw taking face-off
Andrew Shaw prepares to face off against L.A.'s Jarret Stoll on Dec. 15. (Photo by Chase Agnello-Dean/Chicago Blackhawks)

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Ben Smith protects the puck from Anze Kopitar of the Kings on Dec. 15. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

nashville bench
The Blackhawks bench reacts after the team scored against the Nashville Predators on Dec. 17, 2013, at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. The Hawks tallied two power play goals en route to a 3-1 victory. (Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images)

oduya raanta
Johnny Oduya congratulates Antti Raanta after the Blackhawks defeated the Predators on Dec. 17. Raanta blocked 27 of 28 shots and improved his NHL record to 7-0-1 with the win. (Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)

Patrick Sharp takes a tumble between Canucks goaltender Eddie Lack and defenseman Christopher Tanev on Dec. 20, 2013, at the United Center. The Hawks squandered a 2-0 lead, and the Canucks won in the ensuing shootout. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

sharp growl
Patrick Sharp follows the action from the bench during a game against the Colorado Avalanche on Dec. 27, 2013, his 32nd birthday. Sharp scored twice in the first period and again 27 seconds into the second period to become the first player in Blackhawks history to post a hat trick on his birthday. "It's special anytime you can do it, but on a birthday where some of the guys were giving me some heat for bing an old-timer, that makes it even better," Sharp said after the game. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Jonathan Toews celebrates with his teammates after scoring one of his two goals against the Avalanche on Dec. 27. The captain also tallied two assists for his second four-point game of the season. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Jonathan Toews scores against St. Louis Blues goaltender Jaroslav Halak in a shootout on Dec. 28, 2013, at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis. Though the Hawks never trailed, they couldn't put the game away in regulation and lost 6-5 in the shootout. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

shaw kings
Andrew Shaw keeps his eye on the puck as he jostles for possession with Slava Voynov of the Los Angeles Kings on Dec. 30, 2013, at the United Center. The Blackhawks won 1-0 for goaltender Antti Raanta's first NHL career shutout. (Photo by Bill Smith/Chicago Blackhawks)

The Blackhawks salute the crowd after defeating the Kings 1-0 on Dec. 30. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

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