About 15 hours after scoring a shootout goal to help the Blackhawks defeat the Bruins 5-4 at a packed United Center, Patrick Kane couldn't find the back of the net during a shootout contest at a sparsely-attended practice and paid the price.
Kane, with a little help from a dubious goal by Brent Sopel, had to remain on the ice after Saturday's practice gathering teammates' sticks and gloves and putting them in a large equipment bag.
"It's a fun game we play," Kane said. "That's the third time we've played it this year. I guess I'm going to have to lose sometime. I was thinking about it, I'd rather score last night than score in practice today."
After scoring against netminder Cristobal Huet, each Hawk would throw his stick and gloves into the air to litter the ice. It came down to Kane and Sopel and the veteran defenseman fired in a puck from long range before Huet could get set to leave Kane with cleanup duty. Teammates mobbed Sopel as the Hawks are clearly in a good move with their three-game winning streak that has them atop the Western Conference.
"That's just the kind of team we have, making it fun like that after practice," Kane said. "You can have a little fun when you're winning and winning makes everyting easier too."
Coach Joel Quenneville said winger Ben Eager (upper body) is doubtful to play tomorrow night against the Red Wings while defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson, who missed Friday night's game with the flu, "should be a go."
Cristobal Huet will start in goal against the Wings.
Winger Bryan Bickell was reassigned to Rockford of the American Hockey League.