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Sharp, Hawks bounce back in win over Blues
By Tim Sassone | Daily Herald Staff

The Blackhawks' Patrick Sharp celebrates after scoring a goal in the third period against Vancouver.


Associated Press

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Published: 10/20/2008 12:03 AM

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There was Patrick Sharp 24 hours earlier, sitting in a gloomy dressing room in St. Louis, saying good teams don't lose games like the Blackhawks just did to the Blues by blowing a 3-1 third-period lead.

Sharp was sitting at his locker again Sunday night at the United Center, but this time explaining how the Hawks just did something good teams do - respond from a difficult loss with a victory.

And it was Sharp leading the way with 2 goals and an assist in the Hawks' 4-2 win over the Vancouver Canucks that evened their record at 2-2-2 after six games.

"All the excitement of a new coach behind the bench and we let one slip away in St. Louis," Sharp said. "And 24 hours later we find ourselves in the same situation and we're able to press on and get the win. That says a lot for the character in the room right now."

Leading 2-1 entering the third period, the Hawks were able to add on this time with goals from Patrick Kane and Sharp to give new coach Joel Quenneville and goalie Cristobal Huet their first wins.

"I know it was a real emotional loss for us (in St. Louis), but I liked the response," Quenneville said. "Right off the bat the pace in the first period was tremendous. The last two games the pace has been really high. I liked the way we competed in a lot of areas and I think we improved in some areas, too."

Kane had another strong game with a goal and 2 assists. Nobody on the roster took Denis Savard's firing harder than the 19-year-old Kane, but he has been able to put aside the tears he shed to be one of the team's best players in both games under Quenneville.

"I didn't realize how much it affected him when all that stuff went on," linemate Jonathan Toews said. "Obviously, it was something that motivated him and we're reaping the benefits. He's played great the last few nights. I think he's playing loose now and got over that phase where he was playing a little too tight and he was thinking too much."

Quenneville had a talk with Kane on Friday in St. Louis about how he needed to set aside his emotions for Savard and move forward.

"He's a young kid and I just told him that he's got a bright future as a special player," Quenneville said. "You can only control what you can control, so we've got to move forward. He's been very good and I really liked the response."

Kane's goal and Sharp's first came on power plays as the Hawks now are 3-for-8 in Quenneville's first two games.

The Hawks responded with 4 straight goals against all-star goalie Roberto Luongo after the Canucks took an early 1-0 lead.

"We were able to get 4 against one of the best goalies in the league," Sharp said. "It's a great confidence building for our offense, that's for sure."

Huet made 28 saves in his best showing of the young season.

"We blew a 3-1 lead last night and we wanted to come back and have a good effort in front of our fans," Huet said. "We played a good game for the most part."