Despite a hot start, the Ducks went cold in a hurry on a blustery, snowy day in the Windy City. They jumped out to a 1-0 lead just 3:37 into the game, but gave up three unanswered goals in a 4-2 loss against the Chicago Blackhawks.
It was Anaheim's third straight loss and fifth in the past six games. The Ducks fell to 17-23-5 (39 points), while the Blackhawks improved to 20-20-6 (46 points) and snapped a two-game losing streak.
The Ducks managed to put two into the net, but it wasn't nearly enough. They didn't provide goaltender John Gibson much protection in the slot, either. Too often the Blackhawks were given full access in the critical space in front of him. They were burned twice on both of Dominik Kubalik's goals that turned a 1-1 game into 3-1 deficit.
One of the few bright spots for the Ducks was the goal from Max Jones. The big, burly winger showed a willingness to crash the middle lane and buried a nice pass from Ondrej Kase for his fifth goal of the season early in the first, but suffered an upper-body injury after taking a shot up high in the second period. (He didn't return).
Video: ANA@CHI: Kase sets up Jones for early goal
Jonathan Toews got the Blackhawks on the board at the 8:13 mark of the first period when he skated in on a 2-on-1 and tucked it between the wickets for his 11th goal of the season.
Kubalik gave the Blackhawks a 2-1 lead 4:20 into the second period after burying a backhander on an extended shift in the Ducks' zone, and then made it 3-1 with 7:39 left in the middle frame when he was left uncovered in the slot for his 16th goal of the season.
The Ducks cut the deficit in half 2:29 into the third when Rickard Rakell finished a tic-tac-toe sequence with linemates Max Comtois and Isac Lundestrom for his 11th goal of the season.
Video: ANA@CHI: Rakell stuffs in his own rebound
Chicago got it back 90 seconds later when Olli Maatta hammered a one-timer from just inside the blueline.
Gibson made 29 saves in the loss. Robin Lehner turned aside 35 for the Blackhawks, including a highlight-reel glove save on Ducks defenseman Erik Gudbranson in the third period.
The Ducks will travel to St. Louis to take on the Blues at Enterprise Center on Monday.