It was going to be a tough road for Minnesota to climb. There was a lot of uphill and not a lot of time to do it. Unfortunately, much as it has been the entire series, their offense wasn’t up to the challenge, while the Hawks couldn’t be stopped. With the 5-1 win, Chicago advances to Round 2.
To be fair to the Minnesota Wild, it’s hard for your offense to get going when Corey Crawford decided he doesn’t like the look of pucks going behind him. Before the Hawks could tally their first point, their goaltender kept 2 off the scoresheet, but absolutely stonewalling the opposition. With 5 minutes left in the period, Crawford would get some support, Jonathan Toews would find Marian Hossa who had approximately a 0.01 second release time and ripped it passed Josh Harding, giving the Hawks a 1-0 lead going into the second.
3 minutes into the second, a terrible bounce behind the net give Marcus Kruger a wraparound chance. While the chance was fumbled, it still redirected into the net. With that the Wild are down 2-0 in a game they must win, and the Chicago fans are exploding. Add another 3 minutes on to the clock and a puck loose just above the crease, and Marian Hossa buries his second of the night. It’s not 3-0 Hawks, and Harding is take a trip to the bench. Darcy Kuemper would make his return to the nets and it sparked some momentum for the Wild. 10 Minutes into the frame Torrey Mitchell would bring this game within 2. Then the back breaker came. 30 seconds after the Mitchell goal, Andrew Shaw puts one passed Kuemper making it 4-1 and putting this one out of reach.
Early in the third period Patrick Sharp would net his fifth of the series, making this game 5-1, and ending the Minnesota Wild’s season. The Blackhawks advance to the second round for the first time since winning Stanley Cup
SENSHOT 3 STARS
1 – Marian Hossa
2 – Corey Crawford
3 – Jonathan Toews