Chicago, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - Kris Versteeg scored and set up Patrick Kane for two goals, all in the first 5:19 of the third period, as the Chicago Blackhawks beat the St. Louis Blues 4-1 on Wednesday.
Marcus Kruger had a first-period goal for the Blackhawks, who returned to United Center following a 5-1-0 road trip and won their fourth straight home game.
Antti Raanta made 40 saves in his first start since a 3-2 loss at St. Louis on Oct. 25. Raanta will see his workload increase with No. 1 goaltender Corey Crawford sidelined 2-to-3 weeks with a left foot injury he suffered when he missed a step leaving a recent concert.
"I like how he challenged. I think he was comfortable meeting pucks. I thought he was good finding pucks," Chicago head coach Joel Quenneville said about Raanta.
Ian Cole scored the lone goal for St. Louis, which fell to 1-1-0 halfway through its road trip. Jake Allen stopped 29-of-33 shots in defeat.
Versteeg scored on a one-timer from between the circles off Jonathan Toews' pass 59 seconds into the third. The goal came seven seconds after a Chicago power play expired.
Kane then collected Versteeg's cross-ice feed and beat Allen to the far side with a wrist shot from the right circle at 2:47.
The Blackhawks opened a three-goal lead at 5:19. Versteeg chipped the puck from the Chicago zone to Kane at center ice. Kane got around St. Louis defenseman Barret Jackman and scored while being hooked by Jackman.
"We just weren't sharp enough in the third period," said Blues forward Alexander Steen.
Kruger opened the scoring with 4:03 remaining in the first period after the Blackhawks made a couple defensive plays in their end.
Toews thwarted a scoring chance for St. Louis, then Brandon Saad blocked Cole's pass at the point. Saad won a battle against Cole for the loose puck in the neutral zone, leading to a 2-on-1 rush. Saad dished to Kruger, who beat Allen with a shot from the slot.
St. Louis tied it on a delayed penalty as Cole scored from below the right circle off a Patrik Berglund pass at 12:38 of the second period.
Including playoff games, the Blues have lost six straight at Chicago ... St. Louis was 0-for-6 on the power play.