Wednesday, December 11, 2013 11:02 pm
Blackhawks use big 2nd period to beat Flyers 7-2
By JAY COHENAP Sports Writer
Patrick Sharp had a goal and two assists for Chicago, which has won three in a row after a three-game losing streak. Michal Handzus scored a short-handed goal in the second and Marian Hossa had three assists, helping rookie goaltender Antti Raanta win his second consecutive start in place of injured Corey Crawford.
The seven goals set a season high for the Blackhawks (23-6-5), who have scored 19 times during their winning streak and lead the NHL with 129 goals. Shaw's nifty wraparound at 1:22 of the second made it six players with at least 10 goals for the defending Stanley Cup champions, who are once again on top of the league standings with 51 points.
Emery was pulled in the third period of his first start in Chicago since he teamed with Crawford to give the Blackhawks one of the best goaltending tandems in the league last season. Emery went 17-1 with a sparkling 1.94 goals-against average during his second year with Chicago and then signed a free-agent deal with Philadelphia in July.
He received a standing ovation from the sellout crowd when he was recognized on the overhead scoreboard during the first period. But his ninth start of the season took a turn for the worse when Chicago turned up the pressure in the second.
Jakub Voracek and Steve Downie scored power-play goals for the Flyers, who have lost three in a row and went 2-3-1 on a six-game road trip.
Voracek's wrister at 12:31 helped Philadelphia to a 1-0 lead after one period. The Blackhawks were coming off a 6-2 victory at Dallas on Tuesday night and looked a bit listless at the start of their first game against the Flyers since Jan. 5, 2012.
That all changed in the second.
Keith got it started with a big drive past Emery just 43 seconds into the period. Then came Shaw's goal, and Handzus made it 3-1 when he scored his third on a 2-on-1 break with Marcus Kruger.
Downie's third goal momentarily slowed the Blackhawks' run. Kris Versteeg beat Emery off a nifty pass from Brandon Saad, and Sharp's slap shot went off Jonathan Toews and in to make it 5-2 at 14:15.
Emery departed after Brent Seabrook scored on a slap shot 65 seconds into the third. Emery finished with 12 saves.
Raanta made 28 stops to improve to 5-0-1. He drew a large ovation from the crowd when he stopped the Flyers on a pair of breakaways in rapid succession in the third.
NOTES: Blackhawks F Bryan Bickell (lower body) skated Wednesday morning and could practice with the team on Friday. "Showed good progress," coach Joel Quenneville said. ... The Flyers scratched LW Tye McGinn and defensemen Erik Gustafsson and Hal Gill. ... Defensemen Michael Kostka and Michal Rozsival, along with Crawford, were the Blackhawks' scratches. Crawford is out with a lower-body injury.
Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap