ALSO ON SLAM!
Sunday, January 30, 2000
Blackhawks 3, CANUCKS 1
McAmmond leads Blackhawks comeback
VANCOUVER (CP) -- Left-winger Dean McAmmond says a promotion to the Chicago Blackhawks No. 1 line isn't going to change his style even though he has two goals in as many NHL games to show for it.
"I'm basically just trying to keep doing the things that make me successful -- add a physical presence to that line and play smart defensively," said McAmmond who keyed a second-period comeback Sunday night in a 3-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks.
McAmmond, who has been skating with Doug Gilmour and right-winger Tony Amonte for two games, scored the tying goal and set up Steve Sullivan for the short-handed winner as Chicago won its second straight game.
"I want to work in on the offensive attack with those guys, try to read them and basically go to the net and work hard," said McAmmond who was part of that line's five-goal outburst Thursday against Colorado.
"But if I get focused on them too much, it makes my game drop. Their talent level and skill is great but if I can be at the right place at the right time and help out, that's a bonus."
The win drew Chicago to within eight points of a Western Conference playoff berth. The Blackhawks continue their road trip Wednesday and Thursday in Edmonton and Calgary.
In the only other NHL games on Super Bowl Sunday, it was Montreal 3, Carolina 0; and Washington 2, Philadelphia 0.
McAmmond tied the game by pushing a soft shot past Vancouver netminder Garth Snow with a defenceman draped over him. He then fed Sullivan for the back-breaking winner after Chicago had killed off a two-man power play.
Jean-Pierre Dumont scored the third Chicago goal on an uncontested two-man break as the Hawks finished off the Canucks in a six minute 20 second span after Markus Naslund gave Vancouver a 1-0 lead.
Chicago associate coach Lorne Molleken said McAmmond's speed makes his top line click.
"He's got one asset and that's speed and makes the opposition honour him," Molleken said. "That line has played well over the last two hockey games and Dino also brings a physical presence which is needed."
Hawks goalie Jocelyn Thibault was checked heavily to the ice by Brad May of the Canucks at 10:33 of the third period and didn't get up for several minutes. The collision came as he juggled the puck at the side of the net and knocked off his mask.
Thibault, who finished with 30 saves, said he could barely breathe for 10 minutes after the hit.
"I understand that's part of hockey and I hope referees are going to protect us a little more. The trainer just asked me to breathe more slowly and more deeply but the first few seconds I was just panicky."
Molleken said the hit produced a "a scary situation, something you don't like to see.
"But he's a competitor. He stuck in there but he's a little bit sore right now."
Vancouver coach Marc Crawford said his club wasn't rewarded for a good effort after being outplayed in the first period.
"I don't think anybody's struggling with their legs," he said. "We just have to find a way to get more."
May said the loss left an empty feeling.
"We didn't play the game like we could've. We need wins so there's got to be more desperation."
Notes: Vancouver is 1-4-0 in games played on Super Bowl Sunday ... A disgruntled fan tossed a gutted salmon on the ice after the 3-1 goal ... Ex-Canuck defenceman Bryan McCabe played 21:20 after sitting out the last game, his first healthy scratch as a five-year pro.