NHL Game Summary - Los Angeles at Chicago
(Wednesday, March 10th)
Final Score: Chicago 3, Los Angeles 2 (OT)
Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Patrick Sharp opened the scoring early in the contest and lit the lamp 2:08 into overtime to give the Chicago Blackhawks a 3-2 win over Los Angeles at United Center.
An ill-timed turnover by Kings forward Brad Richardson in the neutral zone set up the game-winning tally. Dave Bolland picked up the puck and quickly dished to Sharp, who beat Los Angeles goaltender Jonathan Quick on a breakaway for his 21st goal of the season.
Kris Versteeg had the other goal for Central-leading Chicago, which holds a 16-point lead over second-place Nashville and is looking to secure its first division title since 1992-93.
Chicago is also tied with San Jose for the top spot in the West with 93 points.
"There are a lot of games left. We just want to build as the playoffs come," Sharp said.
Antti Niemi made 28 saves to pick up the win, Chicago's seventh in its last nine games.
Dustin Brown and Anze Kopitar scored less than two minutes apart in the second period for the Kings, who have dropped three of four. Quick stopped 40 shots in defeat.
"We battled. It's unfortunate we only got one point out of it," Quick said.
Sharp put the Blackhawks on the board at the 2:34 mark of the first period.
Brown converted on a wraparound, tying the game at 4:58, then Kopitar snapped a wrister from the right circle that squeezed between the right arm and body of Niemi at 6:50. Kopitar's team-best 31st goal of the season came while Chicago captain Jonathan Toews served a penalty for goaltender interference.
The Los Angeles netminder failed to live up to his surname as Versteeg pumped in a rebound to draw the home team even at 8:25 of the middle stanza.
Chicago had an opportunity to break the tie when Los Angeles forward Wayne Simmonds was guilty of holding with 1:23 left in regulation. But the Kings were able to force overtime and kill the infraction before the giveaway sealed their fate.
Sharp has four consecutive 20-goal seasons...The Blackhawks have won four in a row at home against Los Angeles...Kings defenseman Randy Jones was a minus-3...Chicago forward Adam Burish made his season debut and picked up an assist. He underwent surgery to repair an ACL tear in his right knee in late September.
03/11 00:49:38 ET