Blackhawks shut down Predators | Wednesday, 12.18.2013 / 2:08 AM

The Chicago Blackhawks got a 27-save performance by rookie goaltender Antti Raanta and scored twice on the power play to beat the Nashville Predators 3-1 at Bridgestone Arena on Tuesday night.

Duncan Keith opened the scoring 1:29 into the game on Chicago's first shot on goal. The defenseman beat Predators goalie Carter Hutton blocker side with a slap shot from the top of the circles for his third goal.

Nashville captain Shea Weber tied the game via the power-play goal 1:34 later. Weber ripped a one-timer off a pass from Roman Josi with Marcus Kruger in the penalty box for a faceoff violation.

The Blackhawks capitalized on their first power-play chance to go into the first intermission with a 2-1 lead despite being outshot 17-10 in the opening period. Patrick Kane reached the 20-goal mark with 3:46 to go on a nifty backhander into the top right corner over Hutton's shoulder off a give-and-go with Patrick Sharp. It was his ninth goal on the power play, second in the League to Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin (12).

"I thought we had a real good first period; you know, maybe one of our better first periods of the year and we're down 2-1. That's ironic how it is," Nashville coach Barry Trotz said. "They're a good, high-executing team."

Nick Leddy scored Chicago's second power-play goal at 11:33 of the second to extend the lead to 3-1. He one-timed the rebound of a Brandon Saad shot past Hutton from the bottom of the left circle.

The Blackhawks went 2-for-5 on the power play.

"Two big goals tonight, especially getting that lead and them coming right back and scoring a power-play goal on us and answering with two of our own," Kane said of Chicago's power play. "You know, it's been hot for us, so hopefully we can keep it up."

The Predators were 1-for-7 with the man advantage against Chicago, which entered the game with the NHL's 29th-ranked penalty kill. Nashville failed to score during 3:07 of power-play time late in the second after Sharp was whistled for high sticking.

"It was huge. Obviously we gave up one early in the game and I thought we did a good job of bearing down after that on the penalty kill," Keith said. "It was good to see. Our penalty kill has kind of struggled throughout the year, but I think over our last four or five games, it's been a little bit better."

Not happy his team took two early penalties and seven overall, Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville was pleased by his team's overall performance.

"I liked our game. I liked the attention to detail, very business-like, getting off to a good start, and getting back in after the penalties," he said. "But we did a nice job, and our power play was big for us again."

The loss snapped Nashville's three-game winning streak. Trotz felt the game tilted in Chicago's favor when the Predators took four penalties in the second period.

"They drew some penalties and we had those long changes, and we had guys who were playing hard minutes," he said. "We turned pucks over at their blue line. We had two too-many-men penalties in that period. We gave them all of the momentum. Those are hard minutes on guys, and it sort of took a little steam out of our bench too."

The Blackhawks lead the League with 55 points. The game was Raanta's fifth straight start since he relieved injured Corey Crawford and earned a win Dec. 8 against the Florida Panthers. He improved to 7-1-1.

"He seems confident in the net. He seems like nothing really gets to him," Kane said of Raanta. "He's stepped in and done a really nice job for us."

Hutton, the NHL's Third Star of the Week, made 24 saves in the loss.

Blackhawks forward Bryan Bickell returned to the lineup after missing the past 14 games with a lower-body injury. He got 9:40 in ice time on 13 shifts, registering one shot on goal.

Chicago begins a three-game homestand Friday against the Vancouver Canucks. Nashville will visit the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday before beginning a stretch of four of five games at home.

Scoring Summary
1st Period
01:29CHI Duncan Keith (3) ASST: Marian Hossa (16), Jonathan Toews (20) 1 - 0 CHI
03:03NSH PPG - Shea Weber (8) ASST: Roman Josi (9), David Legwand (19) 1 - 1 Tie
16:14CHI PPG - Patrick Kane (20) ASST: Patrick Sharp (18), Duncan Keith (29) 2 - 1 CHI
2nd Period
11:33CHI PPG - Nick Leddy (4) ASST: Brandon Saad (14), Brent Seabrook (21) 3 - 1 CHI
3rd Period
Three Stars of the Game
Patrick Kane
Patrick Kane
G: 1Shots: 3
A: 0Hits: 0
PTS: 1PIM: 2
+/-: 0TOI: 16:39
Duncan Keith
Duncan Keith
G: 1Shots: 6
A: 1Hits: 0
PTS: 2PIM: 0
+/-: 1TOI: 26:40
Shea Weber
Shea Weber
G: 1Shots: 4
A: 0Hits: 1
PTS: 1PIM: 0
+/-: -1TOI: 28:31
Penalty Summary
1st Period
01:31CHI Marcus Kruger  Delay Gm - Face-off Violation
04:05CHI Nick Leddy  Interference against  Mike Fisher
15:36NSH Colin Wilson  Holding against  Andrew Shaw
17:38CHI Patrick Kane  Tripping against  Victor Bartley
2nd Period
01:53NSH Colin Wilson  Too many men/ice - bench
09:55NSH Viktor Stalberg  Tripping against  Patrick Sharp
13:25NSH Viktor Stalberg  Too many men/ice - bench
14:32CHI Patrick Sharp  Hi stick - double minor against  Nick Spaling
19:30NSH Matt Hendricks  Interference against  Sheldon Brookbank
3rd Period
06:57CHI Kris Versteeg  Hi-sticking against  Ryan Ellis
18:35CHI Brent Seabrook  Tripping against  Craig Smith
shots by period
Team Stats
Power Plays2/51/7
Faceoff Wins1934
Blocked Shots1913
Penalty Minutes1410
2D. KeithD1116026:40
4N. HjalmarssonD0000021:23
7B. SeabrookD0101223:31
8N. LeddyD1004215:22
10P. SharpL0112416:35
16M. KrugerC0000212:39
17S. BrookbankD0011010:51
19J. ToewsC0112021:22
20B. SaadL0102014:25
23K. VersteegR0000213:13
26M. HandzusC0000016:00
27J. OduyaD0000019:14
28B. SmithR000108:48
29B. BickellL000109:40
52B. BolligL000006:04
65A. ShawC0002014:06
81M. HossaR0112020:34
88P. KaneR1003216:39
31A. Raanta2728.96459:57
3S. JonesD0002011:56
4R. EllisD0001015:43
6S. WeberD10-14028:31
7M. CullenC0001015:42
8K. KleinD0001014:17
11D. LegwandC0101019:16
12M. FisherC00-17021:03
13N. SpalingC0001018:29
15C. SmithR0002015:42
16R. CluneL000005:58
24E. NystromL00-10016:17
25V. StalbergL00-12210:47
26M. HendricksL000029:37
27P. HornqvistR0004019:37
28P. GaustadC0000013:26
33C. WilsonL0000212:45
59R. JosiD01-11027:35
64V. BartleyD0001017:04
30C. Hutton2427.88957:59