Sunday, April 27, 2014

Playoffs: Blackhawks vs Blues
Game 6 Series Win

"The Crusade"

Sunday afternoon the Blackhawks had their first chance to eliminate the St. Louis Blues after coming back from a 0-2 deficit to go up in the series 3-2. I threw a prediction out there that the Blackhawks would win in 6 games, and they were right on track to do that. With all the games in this series, that was not going to be easy.

The Blackhawks took an early lead that the Blues matched late in the first period, Sunday. The second period saw the Hawks dominated for the entire twenty minutes, but giving up no ground on the scoreboard. The third period was all Blackhawks as they came out and took a lead and followed up with 3 more goals, sending the Blues back home series losers.

The Good
  • The Blues had the early pressure out shooting the Blackhawks 5-1 early, but the Hawks used a defensive faceoff win to take an early lead. Keith's work to keep the puck in the zone, eventually ended up on the stick of Seabrook, who let a long wrist shot go. He was looking for a Bickell tip, and that is exactly what Seabrook got when Bickell redirected the puck just enough to beat Miller.
  • After the abortion of a second period, the Blackhawks show the Blue how to work a powerplay just 44 seconds into the third period. Keith found Toews across the ice and Toews drove to the slot, beating Miller.
  • 1:16 after the Toews goal, Sharpie blocked a shot attempt at the point and the puck ended up on the stick of Kane. Sharp had taken off behind the defenders and Kane hit him on the tape for a breakaway. Sharp shielded the puck and fought off a high sticking penalty from Shattenkirk to direct the puck towards the net. Weak goal that Miller needed to stop. That opened up the flood gates.
  • Five minutes after the Sharp goal, Andrew Shaw tipped a long Keith shot up and over Miller for a 4-1 Blackhawks lead. The Hawks had their boots on the throats of the Blues at this point.
  • The icing on the cake was a Shaw/Keith 2-on-1 rush that resulted in Keith hitting a gaping net for a 5-1 Blackhawks lead.
  • Seabrook came back to a 2 assist and a plus 3 performance.
  • Crawford haters can, once again, eat a bag of bull balls. He was stellar on the second period that saw the Hawks get out shot 17-3. Overall he made 35 saves, and out dueled Mr "Big Game Goaltender", who only stopped 22 of 27 shots.
  • We all finally got our wishes to see Kris Versteeg sit, but Quenneville dresses Nordstrom instead of the player we expected, Jeremy Morin.
The Bad
  • Right after a late first period TV timeout the Blues caught the Hawks running around in their zone a little. Steen found a wide open Oshie right in front of the net. Oshie was SO wide open and he was able to pound the puck past Crawford so hard that no one but the official realized it went into the net. I went in and out so fast, that even Oshie himself didn't know.
The Ugly
  • The Hawks started the game killing 4 straight penalties, including a Hossa double minor, until Steen was called for a slash about half way through the second period. Luckily the Steen call cut the Hossa double in half. The calls against the Hawks continued throughout the second period after that. The
  • Again, the Hawks were out shot 17-3 on the second period alone, and the Hawks didn't yield a goal. How that happened is beyond me, because every Hawks fan was just waiting for the goal to come. Total shitshow of a period, and the penalties didn't help.
  • Berglund, Ott, and Jackman were all minus 3. I can't laugh hard enough at that.
  • You would like to see Bollig and Nordstrom play more than a total of 8 shifts for 3:57, but I guess we can attribute that to the penalty discrepancy.
Here are the video highlights:

2014 Playoff song via HockeeNight:

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