The Blackhawks overcame a 3-1 first period deficit to win Game 6 in thrilling fashion 6-3. We have ourselves a Game 7 Monday night back in St. Louis.
This team, man. We are never going to see another one like it in this city in our lifetimes. Game 6 was another roller coaster of emotions for Blackhawks fans. Any why not? Should we have expected any different? Down 3-1 early on it seemed like the Blues had finally broken down the Hawks. The quick momentum shift after Desjardins’ miss tilted the ice, and the score, in favor of the Blues. The Hawks survived the rest of the first, regrouped, and turned it on in the second period. Three goals in the frame gave the Hawks a 4-3 lead, and they never looked back. Let’s try to unpack this one…
-Unlike previous games in the series, the Hawks didn’t give up the lead in the third. Andrew Shaw’s power play goal to go up 5-3 virtually sealed it with minutes left, because of course. That might have been the prettiest power play the Blackhawks have had in the past six seasons. They killed the clock and scored on the back end. Poetic finish.
-The Hawks came out firing early. Desjardins missed a wide-open net, and then the Blues came down and tied the game… It felt like the air left the building. Then quickly after that, goals by Pietrangelo and Tarasenko. Bang bang and it was 3-1 St. Louis…
-You would THINK, with a gassed Hawks team, that might have been the kill shot for the Blues. But it wasn’t. The Hawks fought back. It’s honestly hard to put into words. This is just what they do.
-A fantastic game from the Hawks undermanned defense and grinders. TVR had his best game of the series, scoring a goal and playing an all around clean game. Panik was all over the ice offensively. Dale Weise contributed with solid play, and his first goal as a Hawk. Rundblad didn’t explode. It was great night for those guys. If the Hawks can have the “depth” guys do just enough, they should be set on Monday.
-Tarasenko only playing 17 minutes in a road elimination game should enrage Blues fans. Not sure how you don’t have your best player on the ice as much as possible, especially while trailing. Ken Hitchcock is a great coach, but…
-The Blues didn’t go quietly, getting a surge in the third period. But Crawford and the Hawks weathered the storm this time. This is no doubt a great Blues team, but do they have the mental fortitude to rebound from this? We’ll see.
-I can’t say enough about Corey Crawford. His performance might not be the headline, but how easy would it have been for him to cave after giving up three quick ones? He responded like a champ, shutting out the Blues for the rest of the night.
-Some people are really calling for Jake Allen in Game 7? Really…?
-Under Joel Quenneville the Blackhawks are 13-4 when facing elimination, and 15-1 in Game 6’s. That’s darn good.
In no way do I think a Hawks win in Game 7 is a guarantee. This will be a battle to the end. But if I’m a Blues fan or player, man am I nervous… The Hawks have got to like their chances going into a building they’ve won in twice this postseason. This is familiar territory for them. The Blues? Not so much.
These two great rivals get to play one more time for all the marbles. I can’t wait.