Rapid Reaction: Blackhawks 2, Sabres 1

BUFFALO -- Here’s a quick look at the Chicago Blackhawks' 2-1 win over the Buffalo Sabres at First Niagara Center on Sunday.

How it happened: Jonathan Toews scored 1:34 into the third period, taking a cross-ice pass from Brandon Saad to snap a 1-1 tie. Saad's pass may have been a return pass to winger Andrew Shaw, but the puck slid past the winger in front and right to the Hawks captain, who had an easy finish into the open net.

Patrick Kane scored a highlight-reel goal in the first period, taking advantage of some bad defending by the Sabres to snap a wrist shot over goaltender Jhonas Enroth's glove to give the Blackhawks the lead just 3:12 into the contest. Kane took a Patrick Sharp pass in the neutral zone and deked by a lunging Christian Ehrhoff to gain the zone, then created space and used Chad Ruhwedel as a screen to rip a shot into the far corner, bringing a large Blackhawks contingent to its feet inside a sold-out First Niagara Center.

What it means: Chicago wins its second straight to improve to 38-13-14 on the season. The Hawks now have 90 points on the year and remain in second place in the Central Division. Chicago moves three points ahead of third place Colorado in the division race, as the Avalanche sat idle on Sunday night. Chicago sweeps the season series with the Sabres after a 2-1 win at home on Oct. 12.

Player of the game: Toews scored the game winner and now has goals in four straight games for the Blackhawks. He has six goals and an assist during the four-game stretch.

Stat of the game: Chicago was 5-for-5 on the penalty kill and is 53-for-57 in its past 16 games.

What’s next: The Hawks' two-game road trip concludes with a game in Colorado against the Avalanche on Wednesday.