Blackwell and Bedard help the Blackhawks knock off the Coyotes 7-4

CHICAGO (AP) — Colin Blackwell got his first career hat trick and Connor Bedard had two goals and an assist, leading the Chicago Blackhawks to a 7-4 victory over the Arizona Coyotes on Sunday night.

It was Chicago's highest scoring game of the season. The last-place Blackhawks improved to 3-13-3 in their last 19 games, including a 5-2 win at the Coyotes on Tuesday.

Blackwell, a checking and energy forward, relished the accomplishment that boosted his goal total to eight in 35 games. The 30-year-old journeyman returned to the lineup in December after a tough recovery from sports hernia surgery about a year ago.

“It's come a long way in the past 12 months or so here,” Blackwell said. “So to be able to get the hat trick, it was great.”

Blackwell completed his hat trick with an empty-netter with 2:36 left. He tried to set up Bedard for the rookie's first three-goal game on a 2-on-1 midway through the third period, but Bedard fired wide.

“Unfortunately, it slid off, but it was a nice play by Blackie," he said. "But it ended up working out with him to be able to get (the hat trick).”

Bedard leads NHL rookies with 19 goals and 46 points in 51 games. The 18-year-old center had no goals and four assists in his previous eight games.

The No. 1 overall pick in last year’s NHL draft attempted 15 shots during Saturday night’s 4-1 loss at Washington, but only four were on net.

Seth Jones had a career-high four assists for Chicago, and Ryan Donato had a goal and an assist. Tyler Johnson also scored.

Clayton Keller had two goals for Arizona, running his team-best total to 25 on the season. Nick Schmaltz had a goal and two assists against his first NHL team, and Dylan Guenther also scored.

The Coyotes surrendered four power-play goals in their previous loss to the Blackhawks, and then allowed two more on Sunday.

“I think our execution was off,” Arizona coach Andre Tourigny said. “We played solid in the first, but then I don't think we played as hard in the second. We were outside of our structure in every aspect defensively.”

Arvid Soderblom made 32 saves for Chicago. Connor Ingram stopped 34 shots for Arizona.

Keller opened the scoring during a 4-on-4 stretch 6:09 into the first period. He beat a screened Soderblom high on the stick side.

Keller made it 2-0 just 11 seconds into the second. He sped behind the Blackhawks’ defense, took Schmaltz’s feed and slid a low shot past Soderblom’s stick side.

Bedard cut it to 2-1 at 5:28 when his centering pass from behind the net deflected in off Arizona defenseman J.J.Moser.

“That was nice to see that one go in," Bedard said. "I don’t know how or who it went off.”

That got Chicago rolling. Blackwell tied it at 2 at 6:57, popping in a rebound of Alex Vlasic’s shot from the point.

Bedard put Chicago ahead during a 5-on-3 power play at 10:05. He danced into the slot from the right circle and snapped a shot past Ingram.

Guenther tied it on a rebound with 6:04 left in the second.

Set up by Bedard’s diagonal feed across the slot, Johnson ripped in a one-timer from the left side of the net with 2:10 left in the period to put Chicago back in front.

Blackwell swatted in his second goal from the crease 33 seconds into the third. Schmaltz ripped in a rebound at 6:49 to complete a flurry.

Donato poked the puck free, then moved in to make it 6-4 at 8:00.

Blackhawks forward Andreas Athanasiou, out since Nov. 9 with a groin/hip injury, skated before the game and likely will return this week, coach Luke Richardson said.


Coyotes: At Minnesota on Tuesday.

Blackhawks: Host Anaheim on Tuesday.