Stars score early and often to dominate Blackhawks 6-1
DALLAS (AP) — Joel Kiviranta scored 100 seconds in and added an assist, rookie Jason Robertson had four assists for his first four-point game and the Dallas Stars dominated the Chicago Blackhawks 6-1 on Tuesday night.
Joe Pavelski got his team-best 13th goal for the Stars. Roope Hintz had a goal and an assist, and defensemen Jamie Oleksiak, John Klingberg and Esa Lindell also scored. Anton Khudobin stopped 21 shots for Dallas, which has won two of three by a combined 11-1 after dropping four straight games.
Dallas is seventh in the Central Division with 21 points in 21 games. The Stars are chasing fourth-place Chicago, currently holding down the division’s last playoff spot with 31 points in 27 games. The teams meet again Thursday night in Dallas.
“Tonight puts us back in the playoff hunt,” Stars coach Rick Bowness said. “With where we are in the battle for a playoff spot, you get about an hour to enjoy this.”
Mattias Janmark scored for the Blackhawks, who have allowed six goals each in losing their last two games. Malcolm Subban made 31 saves.
Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane played his 1,000th NHL game nine days after scoring his 400th career goal.
“We didn’t answer the bell,” Chicago coach Jeremy Colliton said. “We get another chance, so the story isn’t really any different. They’re going to be desperate. They’re trying to pull us back. They can make that gap look a little less insurmountable.”
Kiviranta’s third goal this season came at 1:40 of the first period on a one-timer on the rush after taking a pass from Hintz.
Oleksiak also scored his third of the season, gathering a rebound in the low slot off a wrist shot by Jamie Benn at 15:10 of the first. Benn’s assist was his 700th career point.
Janmark whistled a one-timer from the right circle high on the short side for his ninth goal to pull Chicago to 2-1 at 1:43 of the second. But the Stars took control midway through the period with a power-play goal from Klingberg at 7:25 for his fourth, Pavelski’s breakway at 9:55 on an outlet pass from Robertson and Lindell’s wrist shot from near the blue line at 11:25 for his third this season.
Hintz slapped at a puck in midair near the crease to score his sixth at 6:46 of the third period.
ANOTHER MILESTONE FOR KANE
Kane became the seventh Blackhawks player to reach 1,000 games and the youngest to do so (32 years, 110 days). The leader is Stan Mikita at 1,396, and teammate Duncan Keith is second at 1,164 and counting.
“It seems like yesterday I was just starting in the league or playing for the London Knights,” Kane said following the morning skate.
“He’s got a thousand more left, maybe,” Colliton said.
Klingberg returned to the lineup after missing his first game of the season Sunday night, which was played hours after his fiancée gave birth to the couple’s first child. He was presented with the goal puck by Pavelski, and his postgame interview was interrupted when Benn presented him with a miniature Stars jersey with DADDY on the back.
“We’re all brothers here,” Klingberg said after regaining his composure. “We’ve been through a lot, and we look out for each other.”
YOUTH IS SERVED
Robertson became the fourth rookie in franchise history with four assists in a game, the first since Jere Lehtinen in February 1996.
Bowness said he told the 21-year-old on Tuesday morning that he’s the team’s most improved player.
“Playing a lot more games, you start to feel more comfortable,” Robertson said. “And when I feel more comfortable, I can make more poised plays.”
AROUND THE RINK
Benn ranks fourth in franchise history in points. … Hintz, who missed three of the previous six games with a lower-body injury, has a goal and two assists in his last two games. … Janmark, who played his previous four NHL seasons with Dallas, has two goals in three games this season vs. the Stars. … Lucas Carlsson assisted on Janmark’s goal for his first point of the season, the second of his NHL career.
Thursday’s game will be the last of four between the team this season in Dallas before playing four in Chicago.
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