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game recap

Corey Crawford, Blackhawks shut out Avalanche

Goalie makes 38 saves, Marian Hossa scores twice in Chicago's fourth straight win

by Brian Hedger / NHL.com Correspondent

CHICAGO -- Corey Crawford made 38 saves for his second shutout in three games to lift the Chicago Blackhawks to a 4-0 victory against the Colorado Avalanche at United Center on Thursday.

"He's so fantastic," said right wing Marian Hossa, who scored two goals. "He's just so calm in the net. He [doesn't] get frustrated. It seems like he's so big in the net. He's awesome."

Artem Anisimov extended his point streak to an NHL career-high nine games with an assist on Hossa's first goal, which made it 2-0 at 15:03 of the first period.

 

WATCH: All Avalanche vs. Blackhawks highlights

 

Jonathan Toews scored at 14:25 of the first, Artemi Panarin had a goal and assist, and defenseman Duncan Keith had two assists for Chicago (7-3-1), which has won four straight games.

Crawford has allowed one goal in Chicago's past three games. He has allowed four goals at 5-on-5 this season, making 223 saves on 227 shots (.982 save percentage), and his save percentage in all situations is up to .932 through nine games.

"I feel pretty good right now," Crawford said. "I'm feeling good with reading the play. The conditioning's there too. I feel sharp during the game."

Hossa scored in the first period to make it 2-0 and again 55 seconds into the third for a 3-0 lead. He's scored four of his five goals this season in the past four games.

Video: COL@CHI: Crawford gloves Barrie's wrist shot in 3rd

Semyon Varlamov made 17 saves for the Avalanche (4-5-0), who have lost their past two games and four of five.

Colorado trailed 2-0 after the first period despite outshooting Chicago 11-1 through the first 12:55 of the period, aided by two power plays, and 12-7 overall.

It was the ninth time in 11 games an opponent has outshot the Blackhawks in the first period.

"I liked a lot of that game," Avalanche coach Jared Bednar said. "We made some mistakes, and they capitalized on their chances. That is a high-skilled team. When we made a mistake or they created a chance with their skills, they scored."

Toews made it 1-0 at 14:25 of the first with a goal off the rebound of a shot by Keith.

Hossa scored his first 38 seconds later for a 2-0 lead. Anisimov extended his point streak with a secondary assist.

Video: COL@CHI: Toews buries rebound, puts Blackhawks on top

 

Goal of the game

Hossa gave the Blackhawks a 3-0 lead 55 seconds into the third period. After getting a breakout pass from Keith, he carried the puck into the offensive zone and beat Varlamov with a wrist shot to the upper right corner of the net.

Video: COL@CHI: Hossa beats Varlamov with blistering shot

 

Saves of the game

Crawford made eight saves in the final 4:15 of the second period to preserve a 2-0 lead. He made six of them during two late flurries, including three within seven seconds in the first rush and three more within four seconds 1:14 later.

 

Unsung moment of the game

Varlamov's save at 7:39 of the second period kept Colorado within 2-0. Panarin beat defenseman Patrick Wiercioch to the puck in the Avalanche zone, cut to the net while holding off Wiercioch, and sent a wrist shot to the far side. Varlamov got his glove on the puck, and then covered it up.

Video: COL@CHI: Varlamov denies Panarin from in close

 

Highlight of the game

Hossa's scored at 15:03 of the first with a strong power move after getting the puck from Panarin's outlet pass. While holding off defenseman Fedor Tyutin, he roofed a shot past Varlamov before sliding into the end boards.

"It's such a smart play by Panarin," Hossa said. "He saw me just use my speed, so he just flipped the puck right, so fast off the board behind my back … As soon as I saw the puck going, I [tried] to use my power moves, try to out-speed the defender and try to finish it."

Video: COL@CHI: Hossa roofs a shot while being taken down

 

They said it

"It's nice to have those things behind, and you can just focus on another day, another game. You don't have to think about like chasing one goal or having a ceremony or these things." -- Blackhawks forward Marian Hossa on feeling less pressure after scoring his 500th NHL goal earlier this season

 

"You can take positives out of every game if you want to, but you have to come with results, and that starts with our top guys and trickles all the way down. We have to be better in those areas and bury down our scoring chances." -- Avalanche defenseman Erik Johnson

 

Video: COL@CHI: Crawford keeps shutout intact on breakaway

 

Need to know

Varlamov entered the game 11-4-1 with a 2.12 goals-against average and .940 save percentage in 17 career games against Chicago. … Tyutin returned for Colorado after missing four games with a groin injury. … Anisimov, who played in his 500th NHL game, leads the League with 14 points. … Chicago was 3-for-3 on the penalty kill. It remains last in the NHL (61.5 percent) but is 9-for-9 over the past three games and has killed 12 straight since starting the season 12-for-27 (44.4 percent).

 

Video: COL@CHI: Varlamov makes a save on Keith's one-timer

 

What's next

Avalanche: Home against the Minnesota Wild on Saturday (3 p.m. ET; SN, ALT, FS-N, NHL.TV)

Blackhawks: At the Dallas Stars on Saturday (8 p.m. ET; FS-SW, WGN, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Hossa, Crawford lead Blackhawks to 4-0 win over Avs

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