The Chicago Blackhawks avoided elimination Saturday night, in the desert. In a game that was shaping up to be a Phoenix Coyotes win, it quickly crumbled to Chicago salvation. Chicago’s power play woes continued throughout the night, as they have all series. After going 0-4 on the power play, they are now a DREADFUL 1-17 through 5 games. The game was scoreless, until Coyotes center Gilbert Brule, zipped one past Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford early in the 2nd period. Chicago, finally got on the board from a knuckle puck slap shot from Nick Leddy, midway through the 3rd period. This was the fourth time in the series, that the Blackhawks have tied the game in the 3rd period. This series has gone to overtime in all 5 games, which also happens to an NHL first since the Stanley Cup in 1951. It didn’t take long in the extra period for someone to claim victory. Jonathan Toews stuck with the puck, after a face-off win, and drilled one over Mike Smith’s right shoulder for the game winner. Coyotes and their fans are starting to remember 1999, all over again. They blew a similar 3-1 lead to the St. Louis Blues in the first round that year, and are trying avoid repeating history. With the series headed back to Chicago, it’s hard not to say the Hawks have the momentum. With Raffi Torres now just a spectator, and revenge on Chicago’s mind. Monday night’s Game 6 should be in honor of Marian Hossa if he cannot go, and I fully expect the Hawks to give the home crowd a show. “We’ve got to come out and have a strong effort in Chicago,” Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook said. “We’re going home, which is going to be good, and try to get a lift from the fans and try to get a big win.” Don’t look now, Coyotes fans. 1999 is in your rear-view mirror.
- LW Viktor Stalberg was called for all four of Chicago’s penalties.
- The Blackhawks are 0-10 when trailing a series 3-1.
- Brule’s goal came in his fourth playoff game.
- Chicago is 1-for-17 on the power play in the series after failing on four chances in Game 5.