Marian Hossa was out, a last-minute scratch with an upper-body injury. Michael Frolik was still out with an illness. Andrew Shaw missed the third period, taken out with a big hit late in the second period. And Patrick Sharp left the ice in agony with a serious injury after being sandwiched along the boards midway through the third period. Down the stretch in the third period on the second night of a back-to-back set, the Hawks were down to just nine forwards.

On top of that, the Blackhawks had spent most of the game being out-worked and out-hustled by the Colorado Avalanche.

Yet the Hawks still managed to keep the streak alive.

Daniel Carcillo backhanded in a rebound with 49.3 seconds left in the third period and the Hawks pulled off an improbable 3-2 victory Wednesday night. The win extended their NHL-record season-opening point streak to 24 games, and their franchise-record win streak to 11. They now have a point in 30 straight regular-season games dating back to last season, five off the NHL record.