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Khabibulin makes 26 saves as Blackhawks beat Predators to snap two-game skid

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CHICAGO - Nikolai Khabibulin made 26 saves, and Dustin Byfuglien, Dave Bolland and Martin Havlat scored to help the Chicago Blackhawks snap a two-game losing streak with a 3-1 victory over the Nashville Predators on Sunday night.

Chicago, 13-2-4 at home and 13-1-4 at the United Center, rebounded after dropping the opener of the home-and-home series 4-1 in Nashville on Saturday night.

Khabibulin was sharp, but wasn't forced to make many tough saves, in improving to 13-3-4. Martin Erat scored for the Predators, who won their previous two games, both at home. Nashville's Dan Ellis made 30 saves.

Byfuglien opened the scoring with a power-play goal 9:11 into the first period. He skated from the left boards, turned and ripped a rising, screened shot from the circle that beat Ellis high on the glove side.

Erat tied it on a tip-in just under two minutes later. Although Erat seemed to be covered by Chicago's Brent Seabrook, he managed to deflect in Jordan Tootoo's pinpoint pass across the front of the crease.

Bolland scored at 5:58 of the second to give Chicago a 2-1 lead. Following Ellis' pad save on Andrew Ladd's shot from the slot, Bolland tucked in the rebound.

Ellis stopped Bolland on a breakaway with a left pad save midway through the third. A couple of minutes later, Havlat hit the post, then Ellis made a close-in stop on Ladd.

Khabibulin had to be alert on several Nashville chances - mostly from sharp angles or longer range - in the third. He quickly covered up rebounds or they were picked up by his teammates.

Havlat added an empty-net goal with 10 seconds left in the third.

Notes: Predators C Jason Arnott sat out with a lower-body injury, suffered in the second period Saturday against the Blackhawks in Nashville. Predators C Steve Sullivan, who played for the first time in nearly two years Saturday following two back surgeries, didn't play Sunday. The rest was planned and Sullivan is expected to play Tuesday night in Toronto. Nashville D Greg de Vries missed his third game due to illness. ... Chicago RW Troy Brouwer and D Aaron Johnson were healthy scratches. ... The crowd of 21,666 was Chicago's 19th sellout in 19 home games this season.

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