Dach scores twice as Blackhawks down Sabres
It's not often that Patrick Kane passes up what he thinks is going to be a sure goal.
But the Blackhawks superstar did exactly that late in his team's 4-1 victory over Buffalo on Sunday during an entertaining shift in which he kept trying to get the puck to Kirby Dach to see if the rookie could notch a hat trick.
Kane's pass nearly succeeded, too, but Dach's attempt stayed in front of goalie Carter Hutton, keeping the 18-year-old rookie from making history at the United Center.
"I was just telling him I probably could have backhand/shelved that one," Kane said with a wide smile. "I took a goal away from myself to try and hit him in the slot."
Said Dach: "I was wanting it pretty bad. Kaner gave me a couple nice chances and I might owe him a steak dinner for missing those."
Kane and Jonathan Toews also scored, and Corey Crawford made 33 saves as the Hawks improved to 9-7-4. They are also 5-0-1 in the last six games, outscoring their opponents 28-15. Kane, who extended his point streak to nine games, now has 11 goals.
Including playoffs, Dach became just the third Blackhawks 18-year-old to score twice in one game, joining Kane and Eddie Olczyk.
Dach's first goal came at 15:43 of the first period when his backhanded shot fluttered past Hutton after deflecting off Jack Eichel's stick. He then made it 2-0 at 12:32 of the second period by pulling off a gorgeous forehand/backhand move that totally handcuffed Hutton.
Dach also tried the backhand shot on his final shift, but it sailed just wide with 37 seconds remaining.
"Growing up I always used to go forehand/backhand and just over time developed that backhand," said Dach, who is now tied for third on the team with 5 goals. "It's kind of unpredictable for the goalies. Look at (Brent) Seabrook's goal last night (in Nashville). Pekka Rinne didn't really know where the puck was coming from.
"It's just a different type of shot. You can ask goalies in the league -- I think it's one of the hardest shots to stop.
Dach stood out during the entire second period, too, as he:
• Drew a holding penalty on Rasmus Dahlin after getting inside position.
• Neatly lifted Eichel's stick, stealing the puck in the defensive zone with 45 second remaining.
• Ran over Sam Reinhart in the waning seconds. He was whistled for interference, but drew a large roar from the crowd.
"He looks like he's having a lot of fun out there," said Sabres coach Ralph Krueger. "He's going to be an exciting player here to watch in the league."
One who is currently averaging more points per game than No. 1 pick Jack Hughes (4G, 6A) and No. 2 pick Kaapo Kakko (6G, 2A).
"We love him, obviously," said coach Jeremy Colliton. "He's a tremendous talent. ... He missed basically all of training camp and he's been a factor for us.
"He's helping us win. Got a lot of fun times ahead of us watching him develop and he's going to be a big-time player for us."