TORONTO (AP) — While Patrick Kane is on the doorstep of 1,000 career points, Jonathan Toews is closing in on a milestone of his own.
Toews had two goals and two assists, and the Chicago Blackhawks beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 6-2 on Saturday night for their fourth consecutive victory.
Dominik Kubalik added two goals and an assist for Chicago (23-20-6), which improved to 11-5 in its last 16 games. Drake Caggiula had a goal and an assist, and Brandon Saad also scored.
“We’ve found ways to make things interesting in a lot of games where we get leads early,” Toews said. “We were pretty determined to keep our foot down.”
Kane extended his point streak to nine games with an assist on Saad’s goal. The All-Star forward has 999 points heading into Sunday night’s home game against Winnipeg.
The 31-year-old Toews moved to 798 points for his career.
“I guess there’s a race,” the captain said. “It’s a matter of time before (Kane) gets it. We’re excited.”
William Nylander and Alexander Kerfoot scored for Toronto (25-17-7), which has dropped five of six. Frederik Andersen made 28 saves.
The Maple Leafs don’t play again until Jan. 27 at Nashville.
“It’s time to just look in the mirror,” Andersen said. “It’s not a time to point fingers.
“Use this week to reflect and make sure we come with more intensity and more purpose.”
The Blackhawks grabbed control with three goals in the first period.
Caggiula scored his fifth of the season just 21 seconds into the game, collecting a puck off the end boards and banking it from the side of the net off Andersen.
Toews made it 2-0 at 5:32 on a delayed penalty when he stepped around Adam Brooks and beat Andersen for his 13th.
Nylander had a couple of chances from the slot to get Toronto back within one, but Crawford was there each time.
The Blackhawks, who have two more games before getting 10 days off, then made it 3-0 at 11:02.
Activated off injured reserve after being sidelined by an ankle problem, Saad took a quick pass from Kane at the blue line after Andreas Johnsson turned the puck over, and the winger fired one past Andersen for his 12th.
“Sloppy, missed assignments, careless with the puck,” Maple Leafs captain John Tavares said. “Just not good enough.”
Nylander got one back 25 seconds into the middle period with his 22nd on a power play, but Toews fought off Martin Marincin on a wraparound to make it 4-1 just 2:54 later.
Toews also set up Kubalik for two goals in the second, including a spectacular play with 2:18 left. Toews sent a saucer pass toward the front of the net, and Kubalik batted it in out of mid-air for his 20th.
“You can’t give a good player a bad pass,” Toews said. “I tried my best on that one.”
NOTES: Chicago beat Toronto 5-4 at the United Center in November. … Kane had his No. 88 retired by the Ontario Hockey League’s London Knights on Friday. The 31-year-old recorded 145 points (62 goals, 83 assists) in one junior season with the club back in 2006-07.
Blackhawks: Host Winnipeg on Sunday night.
Maple Leafs: Visit Nashville on Jan. 27.