Kane's streak just keeps going as Blackhawks win 4-0
Halfway to history.
Halfway to Gretzky.
That's where Patrick Kane is now after recording a point in his 26th straight game during the Blackhawks' 4-0 victory over the Vancouver Canucks at the United Center on Sunday.
To be sure, halfway to Gretzky's record of 51 is like being halfway to Joe DiMaggio's record of 56 straight games with a hit, or maybe Barry Sanders' record of 14 straight 100-yard games.
Yes, you're on a roll … but reaching those heights seems nothing more than utter and complete fantasy.
Said Kane after the streak was at 20 two weeks ago: "We all know how special of a player (Gretzky) was and how many records he has. That won't be touched, that won't be broken."
Maybe not, but watching history in the making has certainly been fun for his teammates and Hawks fans that fill the UC or watch the games on a nightly basis on TV.
"It's pretty special," said Duncan Keith, who gave the Hawks a 1-0 lead on a power-play goal 11:51 into the first period. "He creates something every night.
"I think a lot of it has to do with his work ethic and his desire and how much he cares. His skill level gets talked about a lot, but I think one thing that doesn't get mentioned as much is just how much he cares and how he wants to be the best."
Kane received an assist on Keith's goal a full 10 seconds after making the pass. Keith scored only after Artemi Panarin had shot the puck, drew iron and re-fed Keith for the first goal of the game.
"I passed it and it went in 10 or 15 seconds later," Kane said. "I actually didn't know I got an assist until I heard 'em announce it. I was hopin' they didn't get it wrong and then maybe they've got to call it back."
Kane's streak is now the longest in the NHL since Mats Sundin's 30-gamer in 1992-93. If this would somehow go on for another 26 games, Kane would pass Gretzky on Feb. 9 when the Hawks host San Jose.
"He is the top guy in the league," Vancouver's Henrik Sedin said. "You can't be one guy matching up against him. It's got to be five guys being aware. I thought we did a decent job, but he still had some great chances."
Kane said it's "a big honor if someone like that is making those statements," but the Hawks' superstar stayed level-headed with his next statement.
"I don't know, I think there's different players that are good at different things," Kane said. "You're always trying to learn, you're always trying to get better. That's kind of the group we have in here. I don't think we're ever satisfied with anything."
The Hawks' other goals came from Dennis Rasmussen (8:24 left), Andrew Shaw (30.8 seconds left) and Brandon Mashinter (9.8 seconds left). For Mashinter, it was his first NHL goal.
Corey Crawford's stellar play in net continued as the Hawks' goalie stopped 30 shots. He hasn't allowed a goal in 140 minutes, 36 seconds.
The Hawks improved to 17-10-4 overall and 12-3-1 at home. Their four-game homestand continues Tuesday when Colorado comes to town.
That's when we'll see if Kane can extend this run to 27 in a row. If he gets there, he'll be just three games short of 30 -- a number hit only five times in NHL history.
"For him to do it in this era is pretty amazing," Niklas Hjalmarsson said. "I have a tough time seeing someone beat that in a long time. I don't think I've ever seen him this good."