By Joseph G. Phillips, Crusader Sports Editor
Thanks to two goals and one assist by captain Jonathan Toews, the Chicago Blackhawks dominated the Edmonton Oilers 6-4, in Game 1 of the 2020 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Throughout the game, the Blackhawks controlled numerous puck possessions, limited high-danger chances on the ice, and earned a 42-29 shot advantage over Edmonton in Game 1.
“It was a nice start,” said Toews, who had two goals and one assist in the victory. “It always helps your confidence when a few pucks go in.”
In the first period of play, the 12th seeded Blackhawks jumped out to a 4-1 lead over 5th seeded Edmonton in Saturday’s Western Conference playoff showdown. The Blackhawks exploded for four unanswered goals, just as they did on March 11, when they last played the San Jose Sharks pre COVID-19.
The Hawks also used an efficient power play against the Oilers in Game 1, thanks to two goals and three assists by rookie sensation Dominik Kubalik.
Kubalik set a rookie playoff debut record with five points within the first two periods of the game and broke former Hawks Steve Larmer’s franchise record for most points by a rookie in a playoff game. Larmer earned four points (one goal, three assists) in Game 2 of the 1983 Division Finals.
Kubalik also became the first player in NHL history to record five points in his postseason debut.
Final Score: Hawks 6, Oilers 4.
With the victory, the Hawks now have a 1-0 lead over the Edmonton Oilers in the Western Conference playoff series.
Chicago Crusader Players of the Game:
Jonathan Toews, Blackhawks, 2 goals, 1 assist.
Dominik Kubalik, Blackhawks, 2 goals, 3 assists.