CHICAGO — Jonathan Toews and Brandon Saad scored first-period goals, Corey Crawford made 39 saves and the Chicago Blackhawks held on to defeat the Minnesota Wild 3-1 on Sunday night.
Dominik Kahun added an empty-netter with 58.5 second left as the Blackhawks improved to 2-2-2 under coach Jeremy Colliton, who replaced Joel Quenneville on Nov. 6. Patrick Kane had two assists for Chicago, 2-0-1 in its last three games.
Zach Parise scored for Minnesota, which lost its second straight game and for the third time in four games. The Wild controlled the game after Parise’s goal made it 2-1 midway through the second, but Crawford was sharp and preserved the lead.
Backup Alex Stalock stopped 25 shots for Minnesota as usual starter Devan Dubnyk got the night off in the second of back-to-back games.
Parise has six goals in his last nine games and has scored in two straight. His goal in a 3-2 loss to Buffalo on Saturday was the 341st of his career and made him the highest-scoring Minnesota-born NHL player.
Wild forward Marcus Foligno left the game at 7:13 of the second period after getting hit in the right leg by a shot by Chicago’s Brent Seabrook. Foligno crumpled to the ice and had to be helped off.
Chicago took a 2-0 lead in the first period.
Toews opened the scoring 8:26 in with a power-play tip-in from the left edge of the crease. Toews slipped past Wild defenceman Matt Dumba, then Kane threaded a pinpoint pass from the right circle across the front of the crease to the blade of Toews’ stick.
Saad made it 2-0 with 2:31 left in the period. When Dumba couldn’t handle a wobbling puck near left wing boards, Saad powered past, drove to the net, cut across the crease and beat Stalock with a backhander.
Parked in front of the net, Parise deflected Mikko Koivu’s feed form the right corner for power-play goal at 7:56 of the second to cut it to 2-1.
The Wild dominated the rest of the period, pinning Chicago in its end for stretches and forcing Crawford to make several tough, close-in saves to maintain the lead. Eric Staal shot wide when he slipped in alone midway through the period.
Crawford was tested again in the third, as Minnesota outshot Chicago 14-5.
NOTES: Kane turns 30 on Monday. The Blackhawks drafted the star forward, now in his 12th NHL season, first overall in 2007. . The Blackhawks honoured broadcaster, Chicago native and 16-year NHL veteran Eddie Olczyk before the game with a “One More Shift” pregame ceremony on Hockey Fights Cancer night. The 52-year-old Olczyk was Chicago’s first-round draft pick (third overall) in 1985, and underwent surgery and follow-up treatment for colon cancer last year. . Minnesota C Joel Eriksson Ek, a 2015 first-round draft puck, was back in the lineup Sunday after being a healthy scratch for the first time on Saturday. Eriksson Ek had missed six games earlier with a lower-body injury. . Chicago veteran LW Chris Kunitz was a healthy scratch. D Jan Rutta returned after sitting out two games.
Wild: Host Ottawa on Wednesday
Blackhawks: At Washington on Wednesday.
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Matt Carlson, The Associated Press