Give Niklas Hjalmarsson credit for at least trying to block Sheldon Souray's bomb late in the third period Friday.
But as admirable as Hjalmarsson's intention was, it turned fatal for the Blackhawks when Souray's big shot deflected off the defenseman's stick and past Ray Emery, snapping a 1-1 tie with 2:08 to play.
Anaheim's 2-1 victory at the United Center was the Ducks' third in a row over the Hawks and moved them back within 3 points of the Western Conference lead.
"I tried to do as much as I could there to try and block the shot, but obviously it went off my stick there and in the net," Hjalmarsson said. "That's the way the puck bounces sometimes. Sometimes you get the bounces with you and sometimes you get it against and this time obviously was against."
Souray has one of the hardest and heaviest shots in the NHL and he got it away quickly.
"I had some time and I didn't want someone getting in the lane and get blocked," Souray said.
"They got a break there for sure," Hawks coach Joel Quenneville said.
All three losses to the Ducks have been similar, particularly the last two. Anaheim scored 3 goals in the final 5½ minutes last week to wipe out a late 2-1 Hawks lead.
"If you look at the last two games we played with them it's the exact same scenario," Quenneville said. "You look like you might get something out of the game and come up empty.
"They were all pretty even games. You look at how close you are to the finish line and you come up with nothing, it's almost hard to imagine you come up with no wins and only 1 point. Hopefully there are lessons there because when the games are on the line, tight games, is when we want to be at our best."
After a scoreless first period, Corey Perry put Anaheim ahead at 1:15 of the second period on a snap shot past Emery from inside the right circle.
The lead lasted until 2:26 of the third period when Patrick Kane tied it on a power play. Kane snapped one past Jonas Hiller from the low right circle for his 18th goal of the season.
If not for Emery, the Hawks might have been blown out of the building. He made 22 saves, many of them on four-star chances.
The Hawks now have lost three of their last four.
"When we're going and rolling as a team everybody is doing their job," Duncan Keith said. "Playing good hockey, that's what it comes down to, being smart with the puck."
The Ducks snapped a four-game losing streak with the win.
"We're not out of the woods by any stretch," Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said. "Anyone can do anything once, but to do it consistently is a big deal."
"They're a good team," Souray said of the Hawks. "It's good we have a little success against them in the regular season and that's all it means. We have a lot of hockey left, they're a team that's on top and we're chasing them."Copyright © 2014 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.