Patrick Kane and the wow factor are going hand in hand a lot these days.
Kane did it again Tuesday night, scoring a highlight-reel goal in the Blackhawks' 3-1 win over the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena.
Kane beat Predators goalie Carter Hutton with a high backhander to the short side from the low right circle on a power play at 16:14 of the second period that had to be seen to be appreciated.
"Kaner made a great shot," Hawks coach Joel Quenneville told reporters.
The Hawks never looked back after that goal, which was Kane's sixth game-winner of the season.
Not only was it the 10th straight game in which the Hawks scored a power-play goal, it also gave Kane 20 goals for the season and points in 22 of the last 23 games.
"Our power play was big again for us," Quenneville said. "We're scoring different ways. We're using different looks and different options. The patience level and play recognition by the guys is high end, but it's all because we're shooting the puck and things happen."
Hawks goalie Antti Raanta ran his record to 7-1-1 with another strong performance. After facing 17 shots in the first period, Raanta saw only 4 in the second and 7 on the third.
Raanta was big during a three-minute penalty kill in the second period that could have given Nashville some momentum but didn't. In all, the Hawks were short-handed seven times and allowed just the 1 goal.
"We didn't let them do what they wanted to do," Quenneville said. "I don't think we've had a game with 7 penalties all year. When you win those kinds of games you've got to give some credit to the PK."
Duncan Keith gave the Hawks a 1-0 lead with a goal 1:29 into the game, but Shea Weber tied it on a power play at 3:03 with a wicked slap shot past Raanta from the left side.
Nick Leddy scored another power-play goal at 11:33 of the second period from inside the left circle on a long Brandon Saad rebound to give the Hawks a 2-goal cushion.
It was another big game from the Hawks' defense with the goals by Keith and Leddy and 4 blocked shots apiece from Brent Seabrook and Johnny Oduya.
"I liked our game tonight," Quenneville said. "The attention to detail, very businesslike, a good start and getting back into it after the (early) penalties."
Bryan Bickell returned to the Hawks' lineup after missing 14 games with a left-knee injury and skated at left wing on the third line with Andrew Shaw and Saad. Bickell played only 9:40 in his return.
"I feel good," Bickell told reporters. "Q asked me if I was ready and I said I was really, really ready. It's been a month since I've been out, and it was a long month. It felt like it was a year. With this team and the way it's been going, hopefully I can help out in any way."
Quenneville was happy to have Bickell back.
"He's got a presence and he gives us some size and physicality," Quenneville said. "It gives us some options with that line. We'll put Saad back on the right side and hopefully that can be a good line for us knowing they all bring something different, all three. Hopefully it can be a dangerous line for us."
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