Jan 11, 2014; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens center Daniel Briere (48) misses a chance to score against Chicago Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford (50) as Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Mike Kostka (6) defends during the first period at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports
The Hockey Night in America special presentation was two Original 6 teams facing off in Montreal. The home crowd didn’t get to witness any goals in the first period even though the home team had four straight minutes of powerplays. The game picked up it’s intensity when Patrick Kane got smashed on the boards which you hardly ever see happen. Anyways the game got chippy after it and ended with a Kris Versteeg fight that really was more dancing than throwing punches. There was no score after one with Montreal holding a 11-6 lead in shots, but the Hawks owned the last 4 minutes of the period.
The second period was a lot more of the first with a lot of “pace” but not very many quality chances by either team. The Hawks PK had another chance and had a solid two minutes without giving up a shot. The Canadiens finally broke the scoring drought in the contest when Markrov fired one near Parros and past Corey Crawford. PK Subban could have been whistled for 3 different penalties on Jonathan Toews but the refs swallowed the whistle, but ironically Subban would get the first Montreal penalty for delay of game. The Canadiens should have scored a short handed goal but Corey Crawford made one of his best saves of the season with his skate and to preserve the 1-0 deficit. The Hawks have 20 minutes left to turn this game around!
The third period had a tremendous surge by the Hawks, with a goal waved off early on with Handzus getting called in the crease. The Hawks would finally score on a very pretty passing play with every player go on the ice touching the puck with Marian Hossa finishing off his 16th goal of the season. Jonathan Toews would have a great chance to win it late in the period but Carey Price was on his game Saturday evening.
The overtime period was horrible with the Canadiens owning the puck possession, and eventually the puck ended up behind Crawford for a 2-1 overtime final in favor of Montreal.
-The star of the game by far was Crawford who kept the Hawks from getting blown out let alone picking up a road point. Crawford skate save in the 2nd was great!
-Late in the third, Bryan Bickell showed flashes of the playoffs with a shot off the post and a good solid check behind the net. Bickell turning the corner would be huge.
-Handzus needs to be a part time player and the 3 D-man rotation needs to evaporate
Back at it Sunday night!