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Chicago
Blackhawks
31-42-9
Nashville
Predators
51-23-8
OT
30 SOG
28 SOG
1st2nd3rdOTT
CHI
NSH
game recap

Blackhawks 4, Predators 3

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 3:48 AM

Associated Press

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Blackhawks 4, Predators 3
Chicago Blackhawks 4, Nashville Predators 3

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -New Chicago Blackhawks coach Denis Savard accentuated the positive as soon as he took over this week. So far, his players are responding.

Jeffrey Hamilton scored a career-high three goals, including the overtime winner, and the Blackhawks beat the Nashville Predators 4-3 on Saturday night. Chicago is 3-0 under Savard, who replaced the fired Trent Yawney on Monday, and is perfect in three games against Nashville this season.

"The coaching change is one thing, but to say this is the reason we are playing better reflects poorly on the players," Hamilton said. "The easiest thing to do is to replace the coach. Savard came in right away and told us what he expected. He was positive with everybody."

Nashville coach Barry Trotz had enough trouble with the old version of the Blackhawks. The new and improved group caused him even more concerns.

"Chicago played a real solid game," Trotz said. "Savard has changed the lineup. They are a lot more aggressive. They have a lot of small guys with a lot of quickness. They have some momentum after beating Dallas, St. Louis and us."

Hamilton provided the difference when he skated in low in the slot and one-timed a pass from Patrick Sharp to the right of Nashville goalie Chris Mason 59 seconds into the extra session.

"We should have stayed harder on the puck," Trotz said. "We sort of backed off and gave Chicago a little bit of space. If we had stayed on the puck we could have created a bit more havoc by getting in the shot lanes a little stronger.

"They made a pinpoint pass right through the crease area, and Hamilton buried it."

Scott Hartnell and Kimmo Timonen had a goal and assist each, and Shea Weber also scored for the Predators.

Tony Salmelainen had the only Blackhawks goal not scored by Hamilton.

Hamilton scored unassisted 30 seconds into the game when he sent a shot from the right corner along the goal line that went between Mason's pads and the goal post.

Hartnell answered on the power play at 18:12 to tie it 1-1.

Salmelainen gave Chicago a 2-1 lead at 10:50 of the second period. He skated low through the left side of the slot and shot the puck into the right side of the net below Mason's glove.

The Predators outshot Chicago 15-7 in the second period, with Weber and Timonen scoring goals 23 seconds apart.

Savard used Nashville's scoring surge as a motivational tool.

"I told our guys after the second period that they had to believe," Savard said. "It was as simple as that."

Weber scored from above the right circle on a one-timer that went past Nikolai Khabibulin on his glove side at 13:52.

Timonen found the net at 14:15, scoring through traffic low in the slot.

Hamilton tied it with 34 seconds left in regulation, shooting from the left side of the crease over Mason as he was outstretched on the ice.

"The third periods have been great for us," Savard said. "That's a sign of good conditioning. Hamilton's line has been going good. And as long as it is, that line is going to play a lot."

The third period has been a problem area for the Predators.

"We have to learn how to protect a lead," Timonen said. "When there is a minute to go we have to make sure we don't give up any chances. We didn't play our game. If we had played our game I don't think this team could have matched our speed and skill level. We have to learn from this."

Notes: Salmelainen has a goal in three straight games and has a four-game point streak (three goals, one assist). ... With the goals by Weber and Timonen, Nashville's defensemen have scored 19 goals this season. ... Khabibulin is 4-2 since returning from a broken finger.

scoring summary
1st Period
00:30
CHI
Jeff Hamilton (4) ASST: NONE
1 - 0 CHI
18:11
NSH
PPG - Scott Hartnell (10) ASST: Paul Kariya (19), Kimmo Timonen (13)
1 - 1 Tie
2nd Period
10:50
CHI
Tony Salmelainen (3) ASST: Jeff Hamilton (7)
2 - 1 CHI
13:52
NSH
Shea Weber (5) ASST: Alexander Radulov (2), Scott Hartnell (7)
2 - 2 Tie
14:15
NSH
Kimmo Timonen (5) ASST: Steve Sullivan (19), J-P Dumont (12)
3 - 2 NSH
3rd Period
19:26
CHI
Jeff Hamilton (5) ASST: Radim Vrbata (13), Tuomo Ruutu (2)
3 - 3 Tie
OT Period
00:59
CHI
Jeff Hamilton (6) ASST: Patrick Sharp (6), Duncan Keith (9)
4 - 3 CHI
penalty summary
1st Period
05:57
CHI
Brent Seabrook  Fighting (maj) against  Jordin Tootoo
05:57
NSH
Jordin Tootoo  Fighting (maj) against  Brent Seabrook
06:14
CHI
Jim Vandermeer  Unsportsmanlike conduct
10:12
NSH
Marek Zidlicky  Hooking against  Michael Holmqvist
12:31
NSH
Paul Kariya  Hi-sticking against  Michael Holmqvist
15:45
NSH
Kimmo Timonen  Delaying Game-Puck over glass
16:48
CHI
Nikolai Khabibulin  Slashing against  Vernon Fiddler
16:48
NSH
Vernon Fiddler  Interference on goalkeeper against  Nikolai Khabibulin
17:20
CHI
Martin Lapointe  Hooking
20:00
CHI
Denis Arkhipov  Hooking
2nd Period
14:44
CHI
Brent Seabrook  Instigator against  Dan Hamhuis
14:44
CHI
Brent Seabrook  Fighting (maj) against  Dan Hamhuis
14:44
CHI
Brent Seabrook  Misconduct (10 min)
14:44
NSH
Dan Hamhuis  Fighting (maj) against  Brent Seabrook
17:56
CHI
Jim Vandermeer  Hooking
3rd Period
02:35
NSH
Greg Zanon  Tripping against  Bryan Smolinski
09:40
CHI
Duncan Keith  Hooking against  Martin Erat
09:40
NSH
Martin Erat  Diving against  Duncan Keith
14:14
NSH
Jerred Smithson  Holding
OT Period
NONE
goalie stats
Nikolai Khabibulin
Nikolai Khabibulin
SA: 28TOI: 60:29
Saves: 25EV: 20 - 22
PIM: 2PP: 3 - 4
SV%: .893SH: 2 - 2
Chris Mason
SA: 30TOI: 60:59
Saves: 26EV: 18 - 22
PIM: 0PP: 7 - 7
SV%: .867SH: 1 - 1

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