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Top Chicago Blackhawks Playoff Wins: It’s Getting Later

By Colin Likas
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Maybe I got lazy with the title for this post, considering yesterday’s was titled “It’s Getting Late.” But I’m being entirely honest considering we’re going from talking about one triple-overtime Chicago Blackhawks playoff game to another even longer triple-overtime game.

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This post could’ve been named for the insane thing that happened in this game’s second overtime. You all remember it considering it happened not too long ago, but we’ll also be remembering it for quite some time afterward. Before I can be any more vague about it, let’s talk about the next entry on our countdown of most memorable Blackhawks postseason wins under coach Joel Quenneville.

Note: Check out the previous entries in this series at the end of this post.

No. 13: 2015 Western Conference final, Game 2

Chicago Blackhawks 3, Anaheim Ducks 2 (3OT)

Considering the way this game started, you couldn’t have been blamed for thinking the Blackhawks were going to roll to a 1-1 series tie. Considering nearly 120 game minutes were needed to decide a winner, one team rolling over another certainly didn’t occur.

But the Blackhawks started strong after Patrick Maroon committed a boarding penalty less than two minutes in. Duncan Keith eventually wound up with the puck after some passing along the boards, and he wired a shot at Frederik Andersen. Andrew Shaw was providing the screen and tipped the puck past Andersen to lift Chicago to an early edge.

Then, Clayton Stoner committed a cross-checking penalty three minutes after the Shaw goal. Again the Blackhawks took advantage on the powerplay, as Brandon Saad held in a Ducks’ clearing attempt at the blue line. Brad Richards received a Saad pass above the circle to Andersen’s left and slapped a shot on net. It got a piece of Bryan Bickell before Marian Hossa put the bouncing puck into the twine. The Blackhawks were off and running with a 2-0 lead.

It’d obviously be awhile before they’d score again. Specifically, it’d be just shy of 110 game minutes before the Blackhawks scored again. And they won this game.

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So we have some more to talk about before we get to that. About three minutes after Hossa’s strike, the Ducks rushed up the ice on a 3-on-2 after Kimmo Timonen got caught in the wrong end. A series of passes eventually got the puck to Nate Thompson, who threw the puck at Corey Crawford. Andrew Cogliano and Bickell were both heading to the crease, and the puck apparently deflected of Cogliano and into the twine. After a review, the goal stood and the Ducks had cut their disadvantage in half.

Crawford would need to be at his best through the remainder of this game. Maroon and Corey Perry combined for a great chance before the first period ended, with Maroon sending the puck to the doorstep from behind the net. Crow, managed the freeze the puck from a seated position, preventing a tie for the time being.

Sit. Good goaltender. (Screenshot from YouTube)

Andersen, too, would have to be great through the rest of this game, and he got started on that early in the second period. After Marcus Kruger blocked a shot, the Blackhawks pushed a 3-on-2 the other way. Kruger hit Hossa with a pass, and the elder skatesman tried to hit Saad with a pass cross-ice. Saad’s skate instead accepted the feed, but the puck then bounced perfectly back to Kruger, who attempted a quick shot right in front of Andersen. Saad also wound up with a backhand chance, but both bids were stopped.

Maroon had another chance for the Ducks midway through the frame, trying to shove the puck and Crawford into his net. But Crow held strong.

He couldn’t hold strong forever, though as a series of Anaheim passes in their offensive zone saw Ryan Getzlaf flick a shot at the net from above the circle to Crow’s left. Perry was right in front and redirected the puck under Crow, tying the game with less than three minutes to go in the second.

The third period, while exciting, didn’t have any huge scoring chances to speak of, so the teams went to overtime. The first of a few overtimes.

Thompson had a great chance just above the circles halfway through the first extra period but couldn’t get good wood on the puck as Antoine Vermette hit the ice to block a potential shot. The play was quickly turned the other way by Teuvo Teravainen and Patrick Sharp, with Sharp getting a decent shot on Andersen. Of course, it was turned aside.

Sami Vatanen also had a great chance, this one in the second overtime, when he blasted a shot off the crossbar behind Crawford about seven minutes in following a drop pass from Lord Voldemort lookalike Perry. The Blackhawks and their fans could breathe again when they were sure it hadn’t gone in. At least until Perry had a chance down low about five seconds later, but Crow turned that one away. And then he made a pad save on Emerson Etem. It was an insane sequence.

Though not as insane as what happened next. That’s right, the headbutt no-goal.

So many soccer jokes, so little time. (Screenshot from YouTube)

No matter what happens between the Blackhawks and Shaw moving forward in the winger’s/center’s career, he will always be remembered for this play. After an Anaheim too-many-men penalty, the Blackhawks circled the puck high in their offensive zone. Jonathan Toews wound up with the puck at the circle to Andersen’s left and threw it to Patrick Kane down low. Kane tossed it on net, and the puck sprung high into the air. And that’s when Shaw decided to use his head — literally — to knock the puck into the net and temporarily end the game.

As some Blackhawks poured onto the ice, the officials reviewed the play and overturned the goal call, with the referee saying “The Chicago person deliberately headbutted the puck into the net, no goal.” Probably the second-best on-ice officiating call outside “You can’t do that.”

Alas, the game rolled on later into the night, with Cam Fowler almost ending it shortly after the Shaw no-goal on a one-timer from just above the circles. Crow came out from his crease a bit to challenge and made the save. Then, Maroon grabbed the puck below the crease and threw it out to an unchecked Perry skating onto the doorstep. Crow kicked out his left pad and glove to make a fantastic save on the irritating winger.

This is usually an issue. (Screenshot from YouTube)

Kyle Palmieri would add a semi-breakaway chance before the second overtime ended, but Crawford shouldered that one away. And a third overtime would be required for the Blackhawks for the second time in the 2015 postseason.

Palmieri again had a good chance, this time midway through the third extra frame, as he wound up with the puck above the circles and spun around for a shot on Crawford. That one was turned aside, too.

With fans likely thinking a fourth overtime was going to be necessary as the clock ticked below four minutes in the third overtime, Andrew Desjardins carried the puck below the net and threw it out to Brent Seabrook at the point. He dished it to Johnny Oduya at the opposite end, and Oduya sent it back toward Seabrook. The latter let the puck bounce off the boards, then one-time a shot toward Andersen. Kruger was hanging out at the back door and won a battle with Andersen, putting the puck into the net to finally end the contest.

Defensive center my butt. (Screenshot from YouTube)

Crawford wound up with 60 (!) saves on 62 Anaheim shots, while Andersen turned aside 53 of 56 Chicago shots. This ridiculous outing set the tone for a back-and-forth series that the Blackhawks eventually prevailed in. And one more game from this series has yet to show up on this list. Fasten your seatbelts, Blackhawks fans.

Previous entries

No. 14 | No. 15 | No. 16 | No. 17 | No. 18 | No. 19 | No. 20 | No. 21 | No. 22 | No. 23 | No. 24 | No. 25 | No. 26 | No. 27 | No. 28 | No. 29 | No. 30 | No. 31 | No. 32 | No. 33 | No. 34 | No. 35 | No. 36 | No. 37 | No. 38 | No. 39 | No. 40 | No. 41 | No. 42 | No. 43 | No. 44 | No. 45 | No. 46 | No. 47 | No. 48 | No. 49 | No. 50 | No. 51 | No. 52 | No. 53 | No. 54 | No. 55 | No. 56 | No. 57 | No. 58 | No. 59 | No. 60 | No. 61 | No. 62 | No. 63 | No. 64 | No. 65 | No. 66 | No. 67 | No. 68 | No. 69 | No. 70 | No. 71 | No. 72 | No. 73

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