The Chicago Blackhawks have played two games so far this season and have yet to allow a 5-on-5 goal.
You would think that would be a promising development and have resulted in at least one win.
To this point, it has not.
The problem: While their 5-on-5 play has been mostly fine, their penalty kill has been a complete mess and already surrendered six goals. That includes the three they allowed on Friday night in a 3-2 loss to the Nashville Predators.
One of those power play goals against on Friday went to P.K. Subban in his Predators debut when he erased an early Blackhawks lead with a thunderous slap shot from the blue line that blew past Corey Crawford.
Josi would pick up an assist on the Predators’ third power play goal when Mike Fisher scored the game-winner on a deflection in front of the net.
The common denominator in all of those goals, again, was the fact they all came on the power play as Chicago had a difficult time not only staying out of the box, but also keeping the puck out of the net when they were shorthanded. Chicago’s penalty kill was a weakness last season as well (22nd in the league), but even then they only had one goal where they allowed three power play goals in a single game.
They have already done it twice this season after also doing it in their season opening loss to the St. Louis Blues.
The other big storyline in this game, of course, was the debut of Subban in Nashville, and he seemed to constantly be involved in the action.
Along with his goal, he also helped prevent a goal when he made a sensational defensive play to break up a two-on-one, preventing a pass from getting across the ice to Patrick Kane. He also seemed to be doing his best to get under the skin of the Blackhawks in the third period, taking a couple of extra shots at Jonathan Toews and Kane around the net.
He ended up spending some time in the penalty box late in the third period, earning a roughing call against Kane (on a play where Kane was also hit for a embellishment call) and then an interference penalty late in the game for shoving Marian Hossa into the net.
In the end, though, it was a successful debut for Subban with the goal, the defensive play, and the fact he brought an incredible level of excitement to the game.
The two teams will meet again on Saturday in Chicago.