Frank Nazar scores first NHL goal in debut as Blackhawks lose to Hurricanes in home finale – NBC Sports Chicago

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The Chicago Blackhawks lost 4-2 to the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday at the United Center in the home finale.

Here are 10 observations from the loss:

1. The Blackhawks were dominated in this game. The difference? Carolina went 2-for-3 on the power play and Chicago went 0-for-3. The Hurricanes scored the game-winning goal on the power play with 3:33 left in regulation, taking the wind out of Chicago’s sails.

2. Frank Nazar announced he was leaving Michigan on Saturday after signing his entry-level contract with the Blackhawks. He was thrown straight into the fire on Sunday and he made it a night to remember. He scored his first career NHL goal on his first shot in his first NHL game. It was an electric atmosphere at the United Center after his goal, unsurprisingly.

Blackhawks rookie Frank Nazar scored his first career NHL goal Sunday afternoon in his first career NHL game

3. Nazar’s goal deserved its own point. Let’s get to his overall game. There were a few times early on where he looked around to make sure he was in the right place, but he got more comfortable as the match went on. He certainly didn’t look out of place skill-wise. He also won five of 11 faceoffs for a winning percentage of 45.5.

One thing I noticed is that he is very involved in the game. I have caught him several times standing on the bench, very engaged in the action and always ready to go whenever his number was called. Another thing I noticed was that he walked up to Petr Mrazek after Carolina’s first goal and gave him a pat on the pad to keep his head up. You like to see that as a young player. It shows confidence. It will be fun to watch in years to come.

4. Speaking of Mrazek, he kept the Blackhawks. He saved 2.0 goals above expectations in two periods when it was still a 1-1 game and deserved two points.

5. The Blackhawks had just five high-danger chances at even strength, according to Natural Stat Trick. Their 16 shots on goal were the second fewest in a game this season. They struggled to generate offense, which is something Carolina does to most teams.

6. Connor Bédard was held to zero shots on goal for only the fourth time this season. One of those matches, however, came when he left due to a fractured jaw. He only had one shot attempt in total. The Hurricanes kept him in check.

7. When Chicago’s fourth line of Tyler Johnson, Landon Slaggert and Taylor Raddysh was on the ice together at even strength, Carolina led 14-2 in shot attempts and 7-0 in scoring chances. This trio had a rough night.

8. Colin Blackwell was a good scratch to make room for Nazar. Same with MacKenzie Entwistle, with Taylor Raddysh returning to the lineup. Blackhawks head coach Luke Richardson said he wanted to make sure everyone was in before the end of the season and that it wasn’t necessarily a decision based on performance: “It’s is just a matter of numbers. »

9. The Blackhawks finished the season with a 16-21-4 record at home. Last season they were 14-23-4. So a slight improvement. Next year I imagine they hope to be over .500 at home.

ten. The Blackhawks have averaged 18,836 fans at the United Center this season, which ranks fifth in the NHL. Last season they averaged 17,167, which placed them 20th. The fans showed up despite another difficult year. The Bédard effect.

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