May 21, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks center Andrew Shaw (65) battles for the puck with Anaheim Ducks left wing Jiri Sekac (46) during the second period in game three of the Western Conference Final of the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports
It was disappointing but not always ugly. Yes, the Power Play was ugly, to say the least but the Ducks just outplayed the Hawks en route to a 2-1 victory in Game Three.
This whole losing on home ice thing really sucks.
The Hawks controlled the puck and kept it in the Ducks’ zone in the earliest portion of the 1st period. The Ducks would soon get chances of their own. The puck would wind up back in Anaheim’s zone when Corey Perry woul show his undisciplined side when he tripped Johnny Oduya at 5:39 of the 1st.
Game Two’s Power Play success would not carry over to this man-advantage, as the Ducks were able to kill it off.
After the failed Power Play, the Hawks continued to hog the puck in the Ducks’ zone and as the Hawks got close to generating a quality chance, Ryan Kesler would hold Jonathan Toews out of desperation, giving the Hawks their 2nd Power Play at 10:28 of the 1st.
This Power Play wouldn’t last long, however, as Marian Hossa would get called for holding to negate the man-advantage.
After Kesler left the box, the Ducks were on the Power Play and unlike the Hawks, they took advantage when Hampus Lindholm’s shot was redirected by Patrick Maroon past Corey Crawford to give the Ducks a 1-0 lead at 12:55.
Once again, Anaheim’s Penalty Killers were up to the task and the Hawks’ Power Play was without any answers.
While the Hawks were unable to score on their nearly 7 minutes of Power Play time, Patrick Kane would be sprung by Brad Richards and he would sneak the puck past Frederik Andersen to tie the game with less than a minute remaining in the 1st period.
The 1st period would end with the Hawks and Ducks tied at one goal apiece.
After a very disjointed and disruptive 1st period, the 2nd period would prove to be the antithesis. A very smooth period with both teams trading chances and denying them. This was until 19:05 of the 2nd when Simon Despres blasted a shot past Corey Crawford to give the Ducks a 2-1 lead, late in the 2nd period.
The 2nd frame would end just like that, as the Ducks were able to take the lead going into the 3rd period.
The 3rd period would start with the Hawks pushing the pace and applying pressure on the Ducks. This would eventually lead to Ryan Getzlaf hi-sticking Andrew Shaw to give the Hawks a Power Play. Once again however, the Hawks were unable to solve the Anaheim Penalty Kill.
The Hawks would control the puck throughout most of the 4-on-4 situation but nothing would come of it. Chances would come
Chances would come throughout the rest of the game but the Hawks would be unable to finish them and they would wind up falling 2-1 to the Ducks in Game Three.
Anaheim now leads the series 2-1 with Game Four set to be played Saturday in Chicago. This one feels like a punch to the gut but it’s not over yet.