Blackhawks’ Tyler Johnson producing plenty of shots but no goals: ‘I’m in a rut’

Johnson has gone 11 consecutive games without scoring despite recording 43 shots and 30 scoring chances over the same time period. He has been particularly snakebitten during the Hawks’ last two losses in Arizona and Colorado.

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Blackhawks forward Tyler Johnson takes a shot.

Blackhawks forward Tyler Johnson is stuck in an 11-game goal drought.

Jason Behnken/AP

DENVER — A puck trickled through several pairs of skates Monday and directly to Blackhawks forward Tyler Johnson, giving him an unobstructed shot from eight feet out.

The only issue was that the puck came to Johnson’s left, meaning that — as a right-handed shot — he had to shoot it on the backhand. That limited his ability to shoot accurately at a corner, and his shot thumped harmlessly into Avalanche goalie Alexandar Georgiev’s midsection. If he was a left-handed shot, it probably would’ve been a goal.

That play exemplified the way things have gone lately for Johnson, who exited the Hawks’ 5-0 loss with his goal drought reaching 11 consecutive games.

As a result, Johnson’s body language — as evidenced by his exasperated head-back reaction after Georgiev’s save — seems to be starting to worsen.

‘‘I’m getting a lot of chances,’’ Johnson said. ‘‘If you look at Arizona, [Colorado], Tampa, all the other [recent games], I’d like to say on a normal time, I score a lot of those goals.

‘‘It’s one of those things where I’m in a rut right now. It’s upsetting, it’s frustrating, but I can’t do anything besides keep on working and hopefully try to bear down a little bit and some will start squeaking in.’’

Indeed, the game Saturday against the Coyotes featured a number of near-misses for Johnson, whom coach Luke Richardson later said ‘‘couldn’t buy a goal.’’

A close-in tip of a one-timer by Jason Dickinson? Saved by Coyotes goalie Ivan Prosvetov. A well-placed, powerful wrist shot on the power play with a screen in front? Caught by Prosvetov. A bouncing puck somehow firmly whacked toward the net from 12 feet away? Snared by Prosvetov.

‘‘If you look at Arizona, for example, a couple of times it just hit his glove where any other shot goes in,’’ Johnson said. ‘‘I guess it could be I just need to bear down a little harder. But at the same time, even if you hit the perfect shot, sometimes they don’t go in. You’ve just got to keep on going.’’

Since his goal drought started Feb. 28, Johnson has taken 43 shots — including 26 on goal — and has had 30 scoring chances without hitting twine.

He actually has taken more shots per minute during this stretch than he had before Feb. 28, and he’s being more accurate (his on-goal percentage has increased) and more dangerous (a higher percentage are scoring chances). In fact, he leads all Hawks forwards in scoring chances per 60 minutes during this stretch at 9.6; Taylor Raddysh and Boris Katchouk are the only other Hawks above 6.7.

So it’s easy to understand why Johnson feels so snakebitten, but he must ensure his frustration doesn’t weigh down his play.

He could take one positive from the fact he has — after several years of near-constant injury issues — remained healthy enough lately to play in 22 consecutive games. And with 25 points in 44 games, he still is having his most productive season in four years.

‘‘I’ve learned in my career that goal-scoring comes in spurts,’’ Johnson, 32, said. ‘‘Sometimes you feel like you can’t miss, and other times you feel like you can’t score. It’s just one of those things.’’

Said Richardson: ‘‘He’s doing all the right things. He does it on both ends of the rink. He’s a good leader that way. [If] he keeps getting those opportunities, we know he will score.’’

The Hawks have begun struggling offensively, scoring only four goals in their last three games combined. That’s hardly a surprise, given the lack of offensive talent left on the roster.

But the Sharks and Blue Jackets have been so terrible recently that the Hawks remain in 30th place among the 32 NHL teams.

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