Reports of the Blackhawks' demise have not necessarily been greatly exaggerated—but they might have been a bit premature.
Patrick Kane's goal in overtime propelled the Hawks to a gritty 4-3 victory over the St. Louis Blues before a crowd of 19,146 Sunday at the United Center. The win kept the Hawks alive, as they moved within four points of the final Western Conference playoff spot with six games remaining.
"It feels like it's reachable for us," said Kane, who stuffed a rebound of a Niklas Hjalmarsson shot past Blues goaltender Hannu Toivonen 1 minute 9 seconds into overtime.
"We've been the only ones who have believed. If we can put a little streak together and keep winning, who knows what can happen?"
The game and the Hawks' playoff chances appeared over after a Kane pass hit a leg and bounced right to Keith Tkachuk, who skated in alone on Hawks goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin and scored to give the Blues a 3-2 lead with 1:18 left in the third period.
But James Wisniewski took a pass from Patrick Sharp and fired a slap shot past Toivonen with 55 seconds remaining to send it to overtime.
"I guess you can go from goat to hero pretty quick," Kane said. "Giving up the third goal was my fault. We battled back. Wisniewski got a big goal, and I got a big one in overtime.
"I think we can get there. We're going to keep believing."
Wisniewski's goal was his first since Feb. 13, a span of 18 games, and came after the Hawks had given up a 2-1 third-period lead.
"Sharp broke up the left side, made a tight turn and found me in the slot," Wisniewski said.
"All their guys were collapsing down low, and I had my head up and saw an opening and it went in. I got all of it."
St. Louis opened the scoring on Lee Stempniak's second-period goal, but Adam Burish answered to tie the score 1-1 after two periods. After Dustin Byfuglien's goal gave the Hawks a 2-1 lead midway through the third, Dwayne King tied it before Tkachuk put the Blues in the lead and set up Wisniewski's and Kane's heroics.
"We fought so hard all game, and they came back and [took the lead]," Wisniewski said. "To come back to tie it up just shows the character of our team all year long."
One-timersVeteran Robert Lang sat out Sunday's game with a sore back. ... Defenseman Cam Barker missed his second straight game with a slight concussion.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun