CHICAGO — Kirby Dach scored his first goal of the season for the Chicago Blackhawks in a 4-2 win against the Dallas Stars at United Center on Tuesday.
Dach was playing his sixth game since his return from a broken right wrist sustained Dec. 23 in a pretournament game for Canada at the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship. He had surgery Dec. 29 and missed 34 games before returning March 27.
“That was his best game,” Blackhawks coach Jeremy Colliton said of Dach. “I think he was excellent. He makes a big difference for our team when he plays like that.”
Vinnie Hinostroza had an assist in his season debut after being acquired in a trade from the Florida Panthers for forward Brad Morrison on Friday.
Patrick Kane and Alex DeBrincat each had a goal and an assist, and Kevin Lankinen made 25 saves for Chicago (18-17-5), which had lost two straight.
“I was really happy with our approach tonight,” Colliton said. “I thought we responded in a lot of different ways to the challenge and nice that we were rewarded for the work that we put in. We were pretty sharp with a lot of details, which helps.”
Blake Comeau had two assists, and Jake Oettinger made 24 saves for Dallas (13-14-10), which played without head coach Rick Bowness because of NHL COVID-19 protocol. Assistant John Stevens replaced him.
The teams play again here Thursday.
“We’re hopeful,” Stevens said about Bowness returning next game. “We’re just waiting for a second negative test. We think he’s been negative all along, but obviously with the protocol in place we have to wait. I think we’re very optimistic that he’ll join us tomorrow.”
Kane appeared to give Chicago a 1-0 lead at 1:05 of the first period. Stevens challenged for offside and video review confirmed Dach preceded the puck into the offensive zone and the goal was nullified.
Kane sent a saucer pass on the rush to Dach, who scored past Oettinger’s glove for a 1-0 lead at 12:13. It was Kane’s 50th point this season (13 goals, 37 assists).
Kubalik made it 2-0 at 9:39 of the second period when he received a pass across the slot from Hinostroza on a 2-on-1.
“I got the puck and gathered it and had a lot of time,” Hinostroza said. “I looked and there [weren’t] any backcheckers coming, so I kind of looked at the net and slid it over to [Kubalik]. I’ve watched him score five-hole so many times, so as soon as I see it get past the ‘D’, I knew what he was going to do.”
DeBrincat intercepted Stars defenseman Andrej Sekera‘s pass along the boards and scored from the left face-off circle to make it 3-0 at 19:05. It was DeBrincat’s 20th goal of the season.
“The first two goals, the first one was just a bad play by me, a bonehead play of shooting into our own player, it gives their best line a 2-on-1 and they score,” Stars forward Andrew Cogliano said. “The other one, we have a good shift, we get greedy and we give up another 2-on-1, and they score. Obviously we weren’t doing the right things at the right time and we gave that team exactly what they wanted with the rush goals.”
Cogliano cut the lead to 3-1 at 1:29 of the third period on a shorthanded breakaway with a backhand between Lankinen’s legs.
Stars defenseman Esa Lindell‘s shot from the point went off the boards behind the net to Radek Faksa, who made it 3-2 at 13:46.
Kane scored into an empty net with six seconds remaining for the 4-2 final.
“You have to carry the third period to the other game,” Faksa said. “It was a good third period, and if we play like that for 60 minutes the next game, we have a really good chance to win.”
NOTES: Kane joins Connor McDavid (22 goals, 42 assists) and Leon Draisaitl (19 goals, 38 assists) of the Edmonton Oilers as the only NHL players with more than 50 points. … Kane tied Bobby Hull for the second-most 50-point seasons in Blackhawks history. Stan Mikita had 18. … The Stars were 3-for-3 on the penalty kill and are 8-for-8 in their past four games. The Blackhawks are 0-for-10 with the man-advantage the past three games. … Chicago forward Pius Suter was 11-for-17 (64.7 percent) on face-offs and won more than 10 draws in a game for the fourth time this season.