Minnesota Wild vs. Chicago Blackhawks: Live Score, Updates and Analysis
The Chicago Blackhawks defeated the Minnesota Wild in Game 2 of the Western Conference quarterfinal series. The Blackhawks take a 2-0 lead in the series after a 5-2 win in Game 2.
The first period saw Michael Frolik bury a rebound off of a Minnesota Wild shot block in front of the goal to put the Blackhawks up 1-0.
In the second period, Frolik took another rebound off of a shot block and put it past Josh Harding for a shorthanded goal to put Chicago up 2-0. Late in the period, Devin Setoguchi took an excellent pass from Matt Cullen and put lots of torque behind a wrist shot that beat Corey Crawford upstairs under the bar to make it 2-1.
Patrick Sharp took a bounce off of the backboards and went forehand, backhand to the roof and scored to make it 3-1 for Chicago. Later in the period, Patrick Sharp scored again when Patrick Kane gave him a no-look pass that Sharp tapped into an open net. Marco Scandella scored for Minnesota late in the third period to close the gap to 4-2, but it wasn't enough for the Wild as Bryan Bickell scored an empty-net goal with 10 seconds to go in the game.
Final score: Chicago Blackhawks 5, Minnesota Wild 2.
So that's that. Minnesota now goes home, down two games to none in the best-of-seven series.
The Wild had the chances in the second period, but the turning point was when Zach Parise couldn't get the puck past Corey Crawford on the five consecutive shots on goal that Parise took.
Parise was stonewalled by Crawford and the Blackhawks defense would hold just long enough to let Patrick Sharp score two third-period goals to give the Blackhawks some breathing room.
Final shots on goal were 48-28, rather indicative of the overall effort by the Blackhawks, as the Hawks put up 17 shots in two different periods.
Minnesota just got "out-uglied" early on in the game. They were able to eliminate the skill of the Blackhawks for two periods, but couldn't get the game tied in the second period when they had the chances.
Bryan Bickell scores an empty-net goal here with 10 seconds left to make it 5-2.
Last minute of play in the period.
Hawks up two goals.
Marco Scandella takes advantage of a bundle of traffic in front of Corey Crawford and puts a point shot past Crawford to close the gap to 4-2.
Mikku Koivu to the box here. Very poor leadership shown here by Koivu as he takes his second penalty of the period.
Beautiful goal by Patrick Sharp, but "eyes in the back of the head" by Patrick Kane.
Josh Harding is out of the blue paint looking at Kane and Sharp has a wide-open net.
4-1 Blackhawks, five minutes to go.
TV timeout with 7:12 to go in regulation. Things aren't looking good for Minnesota, down two goals, with time running out.
Koivu takes down Toews and goes to the box for tripping. A goal here by the Blackhawks would almost salt this game away.
Blackhawks starting to carry the play now mid-way through the third period. The Hawks have built momentum on consecutive shifts, just by keeping their feet moving and bringing the puck back into the Minnesota end.
This has resulted in shots and scoring chances galore for the Blackhawks.
Yeah, that felt good. instagram.com/p/Y4AozqiKx4/— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) May 4, 2013
Wild need some goals to avoid going home down 0-2.
Interesting goal by Patrick Sharp here in the third period.
Sharp grabs the puck off of the end boards and goes forehand, backhand, roof. Sharp wasn't facing the net, but was facing the side of the net and managed to get the puck out in front of the goal on his backhand and got the puck under the bar to make it 3-1 Chicago.
Third period underway here from Chicago. It will be interesting to see if Minnesota can channel any of that momentum from the second period into this period as they dominated the last half of the second frame.
End of the second period with Minnesota outshooting the Blackhawks 15-14 in the second period; Blackhawks lead in shots 31-22 at the end of two periods.
For the Wild, that was a much-needed goal at the end of the period by Setoguchi, who walked into the zone virtually untouched, took a nice pass from Matt Cullen and buried it under the bar.
The Wild trail just by a goal, yet again. That was the story after the first period as well.
The second period had a different flare to it, with the Wild getting plenty of chances on the power play, finally taking advantage in an even-strength situation on a two-on-one rush.
The Wild will have to continue to be opportunistic, as well as keeping Chicago from getting clean shots away or getting to Josh Harding.
Harding has shown that he is capable of making saves, as long as he is in position and can see the puck. Through five regulation periods (and one overtime period) in this series, Harding has yielded just four goals on 68 shots.
That's pretty good for a guy who had appeared in five games all season.
Great pass Matt Cullen and even better shot by Devin Setoguchi just uncorks a wrist shot underneath the crossbar.
It's 2-1 Chicago.
Kyle Brodziak will sit for two minutes as he gets called for slashing. Blackhawks will be on the power play for two minutes or less.
Wild with seven shots on that last power play, but almost no pressure after that furious flurry of chances to start the power play.
Wow. Zach Parise completely robbed by Corey Crawford. Minnesota with six shots in a 10-second span there. Crawford will be getting a first star if he keeps this up.
Either of those hits could have been called boarding, as one saw Brodin get pushed into the boards pretty violently.
Bollig charges Clutterbuck. Luckily Clutterbuck fell or it would have been ugly. Ref got him. Wild PP— Michael Russo (@Russostrib) May 4, 2013
Now Minnesota will go on the power play after another hard hit.
Jonas Brodin, welcome to the NHL playoffs.
Brodin gets lit up twice in a five-second span just now. Both of those hits are bone-crunching hits for sure.
Minnesota has truly had some bad puck luck in this game. With neither of those Frolik goals (both off of shot blocks that found his stick), the game could still be 0-0 or even 1-0 Wild.
Harding has 20 saves on 22 shots, thus far. Not much he could have done on either of the Frolik goals.
Wild pressuring for about 30 seconds there in the Chicago end. Minnesota almost takes advantage to break the Corey Crawford goose egg.
The importance of that shorthanded goal by Chicago cannot be understated. Minnesota had just gone to the power play and just 15 seconds after Toews goes to the box, Frolik bangs it into the net.
Big momentum killer for Minnesota.
Jonathan Toews gets two minutes in the box for high sticking Charlie Coyle.
Huge chance for the Wild to get back in the game here early in the period, but Michael Frolik scores shorthanded instead!
Start of the second period in Chicago.
If the Wild are able to shut down the Blackhawks offensive freedom in the second period and going forward, they still control their own destiny in this game.
The Wild, down 1-0 after one period, kept the bulk of their shots against in the first period to easily detectable places. The Blackhawks' power play looked powerless, as it didn't register any shots on goal.
Adjustments for both teams going into the second period are as follows.
The Wild must find a way to prevent any and all fast-break drives to the net by the Blackhawks. Viktor Stalberg had a couple speed bursts in the first period, but it is all about neutralizing the Saad-Toews-Hossa line.
The Blackhawks have to keep pushing the pace. The Hawks had little to no movement to the middle of the ice, with the exception of the goal that was scored on the rebound by Frolik. The only other pressure of that nature was Kane's no goal because he kicked it into the net.
Getting to the net has to be a priority for both teams.
First period ends here in Chicago.
Blackhawks got that quick start that Bickell made reference to before the game started as they outshot the Wild 17-7 and Michael Frolik got a lucky bounce off of that shot block to make it 1-0.
Although the Wild gave up 17 shots, most of them were relatively low quality scoring chances.
I have to disagree with those that claim that the Wild are clinging to this one-goal deficit as they played a mediocre period overall.
Minnesota with an excellent penalty kill. No shots against. The Wild simply wouldn't leave the Blackhawks alone on the boards and took away their time and space.
Just under two minutes to go in the first period.
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