CHICAGO — Led by Teuvo Teravainen, Chicago’s top line was its top line again. And it was just more of the same for Corey Crawford.
Teravainen had two goals and an assist, Crawford made 33 saves in his NHL-best fifth shutout and the Blackhawks beat the Edmonton Oilers 4-0 on Thursday night.
Chicago’s top line — currently Teravainen, captain Jonathan Toews and Marian Hossa — had been overshadowed so far this season by the second group, especially during Patrick Kane’s 26-game point streak. But Toews had a goal and two assists and Hossa finished with three assists in the Blackhawks’ third win in four games.
For one night at least, Toews and company had most of the splashy plays.
“Usually we’ve been watching (Kane’s line) scoring from the bench,” Teravainen said. “They’re scoring all the time. It’s pretty fun to watch, but it’s good to go there ourself too.”
It was Crawford’s third shutout in his last four starts and No. 17 for his career. The Stanley Cup champions kept him clean for most of the night, but he got over to make a nice right pad stop on Mark Letestu with about 3 minutes left in the second period.
“It’s not easy to get a shutout in this league. It’s a team effort for sure,” Crawford said. “We shut them down pretty well in the third period.”
Cam Talbot also had 33 stops for Edmonton, which has lost two in a row after a six-game win streak. Talbot was coming off a 47-save performance in a 3-2 overtime win at Boston in his previous start on Monday night.
“We’ve fought our way back into the fight here and we’ve got to stick with it,” Oilers defenceman Eric Gryba said. “We can’t afford to lose back-to-back games like this.”
The Blackhawks had a 2-0 lead before they put the game away with a pair of goals in a span of 1:53 in the third. Teravainen stuffed home a rebound of Hossa’s shot at 16:42, and rookie Artemi Panarin got a stretch pass from Brent Seabrook before beating Talbot for his 10th of the season.
Chicago got a scare in the first period when defenceman Niklas Hjalmarsson was helped off after taking a shot off the inside of his left knee. While the durable Hjalmarsson quickly returned to the game, Chicago lost centre Marcus Kruger for the night with an upper-body injury with about 15 minutes left in the second.
Coach Joel Quenneville said the team will know more about Kruger’s injury on Friday. Asked if it appeared serious, Quenneville responded, “We’ll see.”
Toews, who had just one goal and one assist over the previous 10 games, put Chicago in front when he one-timed a nice pass from Hossa past Talbot on the glove side with 6 minutes left in the first. It was Toews’ 10th goal of the season.
Talbot stopped Kane’s spinning backhand shot with 1:35 left in the first, but Teravainen made it 2-0 with his seventh goal at 12:29 of the second. Teravainen beat Talbot off a perfect pass from Toews before the young winger was mistakenly checked to the ice by Hossa.
“Tonight it was the Toews line,” Edmonton coach Todd McLellan said. “When you’re a deep good team like that, other lines pick you up.”
Kane got a secondary assist on Panarin’s goal after his franchise-record point streak ended in Tuesday night’s 3-0 loss to Colorado. Kane leads Chicago with 19 goals and 28 assists.