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Blackhawks Mon Feb 14 2011

Hawks Limp Home After Tough Road Trip

Thumbnail image for blackhawks.gifThe Blackhawks wrapped up their "Disney on Ice" road trip this weekend and the finish wasn't pretty.

They blew a 3-0 lead at Dallas on Friday, with 35-year-old Marty Turco again facing the team he spent the past decade with. The game ended with a 4-3 shootout loss.

It was a similar story Saturday at Phoenix, though the Hawks were the team coming from behind to tie the score before they lost again via shootout, 3-2.

Friday's shootout came after the Hawks lost three players during the game due to injury. Wingers Fernando Pisani, Viktor Stalberg and Ryan Johnson all left the game, with only Stalberg returning for Saturday's game. This left only three offensive lines available for much of the third period.

The Hawks didn't get much help from Friday's referees either. Two goals were reviewed by Toronto, with neither call benefiting the Blackhawks.

Friday also marked the debut of winger Michael Frolik, who was acquired Wednesday in a trade with Florida. Frolik didn't score any points, but he had five shots on goal in more than 17 minutes of playing time.

While Saturday's ending was equally disappointing, the Hawks showed a glimmer of hope towards the end. Chicago outplayed Phoenix in the third period after being down 2-1 at the end of the second. Troy Brouwer and Duncan Keith put points on the board, but the team couldn't close it out in the shootout.

Starting goalie Corey Crawford had a commendable shootout performance in comparison to Turco's Friday failure. Crawford managed to save two goals, with Radim Vrbata scoring the only shootout goal.

Turco, however, missed all three stops on Friday, facing shots from former Stars teammates Brenden Morrow, Brad Richards and Mike Ribeiro.

Overall, an ugly weekend of Blackhawks hockey ended with ugly results. The 2-4 road trip dropped them to 11th in Western Conference playoff race, three points out of the No. 8 spot. Only 26 games remain on the schedule, starting Wednesday at home against Minnesota.

 
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