Chicago Blackhawks question: Should Scott Darling Start Game 2??

By Sean Fitzgerald

Apr 15, 2015; Nashville, TN, USA; Chicago Blackhawks goalie Scott Darling (33) makes a save during the third period against the Nashville Predators in game one of the first round of the the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Bridgestone Arena. The Blackhawks won 4-3 in the second overtime. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

After the first period in Game 1 of Western Conference Quarterfinals, Corey Crawford had allowed three goals on 12 shots. The Blackhawks trailed the Nashville three to zero.  The Blackhawks coaching staff decided during the intermission that a change at goalie was necessary.  Crawford had allowed three goals and the Blackhawks needed a lift.

Enter Scott Darling, now Scott Darling has seized every moment that has been presented to him this season. When Crawford was injured earlier this season, Darling came up and has a nice run with the Blackhawks. Darling played so well that Antti Raanta was sent back to Rockford.  When Darling entered the game, nobody knew it would be like John Wayne coming to save the day. Darling literally saved the day for the Blackhawks. It was like Pedro Martinez coming out of the bullpen against Cleveland. Pedro was unstoppable that night and Darling was the same way last night. Everything Darling did worked, he would go post to post and make EVERY SAVE. Darling even made saves with his back and no stick. Darling faced 42 shots and made 42 saves in 67:44 of ice time.

With the performance turned in by Darling and Crawford, the question arises. Who should start Game 2?? Many believe that after his performance last night that Darling deserves to start. Darling was the MAIN reason the Blackhawks were able to rally and ultimately win the game in double overtime. Darling appears to be unfazed by the stage or the moment. He has been impressive every time the Blackhawks have called his number this season. It is a luxury for the Blackhawks to have two STARTING goalies on their rosters. Everyone knows that Coach Quenneville loves to ride the hot hand in net and he loves to keep Darling going while he is hot.

With all that being said, Darling should not get the start in Game 2. It should be Crawford. Crawford had one off night. It is not the end of the world, it happens. People seem to forget that Crawford has won the Stanley Cup before. He also the best player in the playoffs in 2013-14. This season Crawford was one of the main cogs to the Blackhawks success this season. This was also Crawford’s best statistical year.  The move would be to start Crawford and if he struggles again, the Blackhawks know that can turn to Darling to save the day.

The Blackhawks will take on the Nashville Predators in Game 2 on Friday 4/17/2015 at 7:30pm central.

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