If this had been a different part of the year, we may have written this game up as “The Hawks goofed around for a while and seemed disinterested with the Devils before turning things on in the last 20 and putting them away”. With the seesaw that has been the Hawks recent adventures, we could write that the Hawks were being smothered in the first two periods but were able to just barely shake free in the third thanks to Marian Hossa who seems pretty damn content to just do it all his own damn self these past few games. The truth is likely somewhere in between those two narratives. The first two periods were dull dusty hockey. The third was a welcome sight.
It wasn’t the prettiest of road trips but somehow the Hawks head back to Chicago with 8 points and a 4-3-0 record for their last extended road trip of the season. This victory couldn’t have come at a better time for the Hawks. They’re pulling away from the Jets and closing the gap on the Blues/Preds. Now the Hawks will get 8 in a row at the UC against a few softball opponents and a few that should provide a good gauge on just where the Hawks are in the league.
The Kings were undefeated at home so far in the playoffs. The Kings were 22-0 when scoring first all season long. The Blackhawks were without their best defenseman (and possibly just their best overall player). The Blackhawks found themselves down a goal twice in the game. And none of it really mattered. After a simply dominant third period, the Blackhawks found themselves up 3-1 in the series and the games shift back to Chicago on Saturday night. It’s not over yet but the finals are clearly back in our sights as the Kings need to win 3 in a row to close this out… and yes, that includes two games on the road for LA, where they’ve been awful.
Bullets after the jump