The shot was low and hard and cemented the Blackhawks' spot in the history books.

When Brandon Saad rifled the puck past goaltender Antti Niemi early in the third period Friday night at the United Center, the rookie propelled the Hawks to a 2-1 victory over the Sharks.

Viktor Stalberg also scored and Ray Emery earned another impressive triumph goal as the Hawks recorded their 17th consecutive game to start the season without a regulation loss, the longest such streak in NHL history.

Blackhawks winger Brandon Saad:

"It was a huge goal for us," Saad said. "I just took him wide and tried to get a shot off and luckily I beat him to the glove side.

"It's nice to make history. Our group has a great year so far so we don't expect anything less."

The Hawks also pulled into a tie for third in league annals for longest overall points streak at 23 games over parts of two seasons — matching the 1975-76 Flyers and '40-41 Bruins.

"It's a great feeling," Stalberg said. "We've had a great run here. We don't want to stop now. Tonight maybe wasn't our best game but we're finding a way to win.

"It's kind of crazy to think you're not going to lose a game in regulation for the first 17 games. It's a cool thing to be a part of and we're excited about it but the focus has been more on us to play each and every game."