The Chicago Blackhawks (29-14-6, 64 pts) could not stop the Nashville Predators (28-16-4, 60 pts), losing big after G Corey Crawford and the Hawks defense allowed three unanswered goals in the second period.
All told, the Predators out-shot the Blackhawks by only one shot on goal, leading Chicago with 23 to 22, but the aggressive Nashville attack (22 hits to the Hawks' 10) and the relentless shots from D Kevin Klein (4 shots on goal, 1 goal), C Craig Smith (4 SOG, 1 G) and LW Colin Wilson (3 SOG, 1 G) spelled Chicago's downfall. The Blackhawks' starting goalie, Corey Crawford, only lasted a moment past 36 minutes, allowing 4 goals on 17 shots for a .765 save percentage.
After the Predators tacked on a fourth goal in the second period, the Hawks called on G Ray Emery to finish the game. Emery, who has served most of the season as a reserve, actually entered the game with a higher save percentage than Crawford, sporting a .908 to Crawford's .904.
RW Marian Hossa actually earned three stars for his performance on the night, knocking both of Chicago's goals on the night.
The Blackhawks will be back in action on Tuesday, this time hosting the Predators at Chicago's United Center.
Stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago for more information, and for in-depth analysis on the Chicago Blackhawks be sure to visit Second City Hockey. Predators coverage is available at On The Forecheck. Visit SB Nation NHL for more news and notes around the league.