Blackhawks have a night to forget against the Golden Knights

CHICAGO, IL - NOVEMBER 27: Vegas Golden Knights right wing Ryan Reaves (75) battles with Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Jan Rutta (44) in second period action during a NHL game between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Vegas Golden Knights on November 27, 2018 at the United Center, in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

CHICAGO – Would the spark come tonight from two new players in the lineup and a return home after a week away from the United Center?

Not so much. In fact, the Blackhawks were digging themselves out of a rough night right from the start.

Two days after the team acquired Brendan Perlini and Dylan Strome from the Coyotes for Nick Schmaltz, in another move that surprised many, the Blackhawks started slow and the defending Western Conference champions didn’t let them up.

The Golden Knights got three unanswered goals to start the game and kept the offensive barrage going the next two periods, scoring an 8-3 victory over the hosts at the United Center Tuesday.

It’s the most goals allowed by the team this season and the five-score deficit makes it the most lopsided loss of the season. These 60 minutes are arguably the worst of the season for the team so far.

“We’re not happy with it. Progress is never going to go in a straight line, so there are going to be steps back,” said head coach Jeremy Colliton. “Tonight was a step back. We have to get right back at it as quick as we can and come up with a much better performance in the next game.”

Still, back under .500 go the Blackhawks, who had a bit of momentum after a thrilling overtime win over Florida on Saturday. But the dud at home Tuesday leaves Jeremy Colliton’s team at 9-11-5 on the season. Strome did provide the one highlight, netting a goal and assists in a +3 performance in his Blackhawks’ debut, but that’s about it for positives on a rough return to Chicago.

Everything else was, frankly, pretty bad.

Just 2:10 into the game, Vegas had their first goal from Daniel Carr.  Alex Tuch and Cody Eakin added two more scores against Corey Crawford to make it 3-0 after one period.

Early in the second, the teams traded goals as Gustav Forsling got the Blackhawks on the board just 29 seconds into the period. William Karlsson’s power play goal got that back but Strome’s first goal with the Blackhawks made it 4-2.

Then it really fell apart as Ryan Reaves and Shea Theodore scored before the end of the period to make it 6-2 and chase Crawford from the net.

A second goal of night for both Thoedore and Eakin rounded out the scoring for the night for Vegas. Erik Gustafsson’s score only made the final look a little better on the most forgettable game of the season to date for the Blackhawks.