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Blackhawks

Kane scores in OT as Blackhawks beat Panthers

Florida Panthers' Evgenii Dadonov (63) loses control of the puck as Chicago Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford defends during the second of an NHL hockey game Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2017, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
Florida Panthers' Evgenii Dadonov (63) loses control of the puck as Chicago Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford defends during the second of an NHL hockey game Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2017, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

CHICAGO – Patrick Kane and the Chicago Blackhawks found a way to eke out another victory despite another less-than-rousing performance.

Kane scored 2:24 into overtime to lift the Blackhawks to their third straight win, 3-2 over the Florida Panthers on Tuesday night.

Kane gained a step on Florida's Mike Matheson, broke in on James Reimer and lifted a shot past the goalie on the stick side for his 11th goal. Kane streaked in after taking a pass from Artem Anisimov, who had stolen the puck from Matheson.

"I just kind of took off when I saw (Anisimov) had the puck," Kane said "He made a nice play putting it on my tape. I just had to skate into it and pick a corner."

Chicago closed out a perfect homestand against three of the worst teams in the NHL that included two overtime wins.

Captain Jonathan Toews tied it at 2 with 6:02 left in the third period, breaking in alone and also beating Reimer on the stick side after a terrific pass from Brandon Saad. It was Toews' third goal in five games and No. 9 on the season.

"It's nice to get some confidence and score goals late in games when we're down a goal or two or it's 0-0 or 1-1," Toews said. "We've got to really feed off that momentum.

"It's only 30-some games into the season, but it's huge."

Toews and Saad each had a goal and an assist, and linemate Alex DeBrincat added two assists.

Corey Crawford had 35 stops for the Blackhawks, who had lost five in a row before their win streak.

Nick Bjugstad scored in the second for Florida, and Jamie McGinn put the Panthers in front with his fifth of the season 3:53 into the third. Reimer made 25 saves.

The Panthers salvaged a point after winning 2-1 in overtime in Detroit on Monday night.

"I think it was a gutsy effort on our part," Florida coach Bob Boughner said. "We all played hard. We played 60 minutes.

"You know back-to-back is never easy, especially against a team like this."

The Blackhawks had the better chances in the first and broke through when Saad opened the scoring with 3:11 left in the period.

Saad partially fanned on a one-timer at the edge of the crease after taking DeBrincat's nifty feed from behind the net, but the puck slid in past Reimer's outstretched left skate.

Bjugstad tied it 11:12 into the second when he beat Crawford low on the stick side on a breakaway. Bjugstad got the puck behind Chicago's defense after Aleksander Barkov flipped it from inside the Panthers zone.

Anisimov missed on a point-blank chance late in the second, and McGinn scored in the third after the Blackhawks lost control of the puck just inside their blue line.

McGinn skated in for a 2-on-1 with Vincent Trochek, and then found himself alone on the left side of the crease after Chicago defenseman Brent Seabrook fell down. He beat Crawford on the short side, lifting a shot between the goalie's right shoulder and the left post.

"It was one of these games where we could have pulled out a win," Reimer said, "but a well-earned point and (we) feel good about our effort."

NOTES: Florida C Denis Malgin took a hard hit from Chicago D Connor Murphy early in the first and didn't return. ... Blackhawks D Jan Rutta left in the second period with an upper-body injury and is day to day. ... Blackhawks LW Patrick Sharp played his 900th NHL game. ... Chicago RW Richard Panik was a healthy scratch for the first time this season. Panik has gone 21 games without a goal. ... LW Ryan Hartman, a scratch the past two games, returned to the Blackhawks lineup. ... Chicago D Cody Franson missed his second game with an upper-body injury. ... Florida RW Evgenii Dadonov returned after missing eight games with an upper-body injury. ... Panthers RW Radim Vrbata, who hasn't scored since netting a hat trick on Oct. 26, sat out.

UP NEXT

Panthers: At Colorado on Wednesday in the third game of a four-game trip.

Blackhawks: Visit Winnipeg on Wednesday.

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