CHICAGO — Duncan Keith assisted on three goals in less than four minutes in the second period, and the Chicago Blackhawks held off the Anaheim Ducks for a 5-2 victory in Game 6 of the Western Conference Final on Wednesday at United Center.
Game 7 is Saturday at Honda Center (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, TVA Sports).
The Blackhawks took control of the game with a flurry of offense in the second period. For the sixth time in the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Chicago scored three goals in a period, and these came in a span of 3:45.
Saad opened the scoring at 8:23 of the second. Keith sent a pass into the neutral zone to Kane. After Ducks defenseman Francois Beauchemin stepped up to cancel out Kane, Saad picked up the puck and raced past Hampus Lindholm to go in alone on net before slipping a shot through goaltender Frederik Andersen’s legs for his fifth goal of the postseason.
Marian Hossa made it 2-0 at 10:41. Keith had the puck in the left circle as the Ducks defense collapsed into a shell in front of Andersen. He faked a shot twice before sending a diagonal pass to Hossa, who one-timed it inside the right post for his third goal of the playoffs.
Kane made it 3-0 after another nice play by Keith. Ducks defenseman Clayton Stoner tried to chip the puck out of the Anaheim zone, but Keith gloved it to the ice at the right point. He sent a short pass to Kane along the right wall. Kane made a brilliant move around Chicago forward Matt Beleskey before scoring his 10th of the postseason at 12:08.
Anaheim got one goal back a little more than two minutes later. Chicago center Brad Richards went to the penalty box for hooking at 14:08, but he wasn’t there long.
The Ducks won the ensuing faceoff, and Patrick Maroon deflected Cam Fowler’s one-timed slap shot from the right point past Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford to cut the lead to 3-1 at 14:13 of the second. It was Maroon’s seventh goal of the playoffs.
Stoner brought the Ducks within one early in the third period. Nate Thompson won a race for the puck into the right corner of the Chicago zone and peeled back to find Stoner across the ice at the left point. Jakob Silfverberg bumped Crawford’s glove just before the puck arrived at the top of the crease, but Stoner’s goal was allowed at 1:57 of the third despite the goaltender’s protests.
Shaw scored an empty-net goal with 48.8 seconds left to ensure this series will go seven games.
For the second consecutive season, the Blackhawks needed a Game 6 victory to force Game 7 in the Western Conference Final and delivered. For the third consecutive season, the Ducks missed an opportunity to close out a series in Game 6 when up 3-2 and will need to try again in Game 7 at Honda Center.
That has not gone well the past two seasons. The Detroit Red Wings defeated the Ducks in the opening round in 2013, and the Los Angeles Kings crushed the Ducks to close out the second round last season.
This was the fourth time in five Game 6s when trailing 3-2 in the series that this core group of Chicago players has forced a Game 7. But they are 1-2 in those decisive games, defeating the Detroit Red Wings in the second round in 2013 but losing to the Vancouver Canucks in the first round in 2011 and the Kings in the conference final last season.
Andersen made 32 saves in a victory to start the series for the Ducks, but the Blackhawks came back to even it in Game 2 when Marcus Kruger scored late in the third overtime. Anaheim won Game 3 after a late second-period goal from Simon Despres was the difference, but Chicago tied the series at 2-2 with Antoine Vermette’s goal in the second overtime of Game 4.
The Blackhawks had been 14-0 in Games 5 and 6 when a series was tied 2-2 since 2009, but the Ducks busted that streak with a Beleskey goal 45 seconds into overtime of Game 5. Toews had scored twice with Crawford pulled for the extra attacker in the final two minutes to force overtime.
|Brandon Saad (5) ASST: Patrick Kane (7), Duncan Keith (12)|
1 - 0 CHI
|Marian Hossa (3) ASST: Duncan Keith (13), Brad Richards (7)|
2 - 0 CHI
|Patrick Kane (10) ASST: Duncan Keith (14)|
3 - 0 CHI
|PPG - Patrick Maroon (7) ASST: Cam Fowler (7), Sami Vatanen (8)|
3 - 1 CHI
|Clayton Stoner (1) ASST: Nate Thompson (4), Jakob Silfverberg (13)|
3 - 2 CHI
|Andrew Shaw (3) ASST: Andrew Desjardins (1), Antoine Vermette (3)|
4 - 2 CHI
|EN - Andrew Shaw (4) ASST: Andrew Desjardins (2), Marcus Kruger (1)|
5 - 2 CHI
|Power Play %||15.7%||17.6%|
|% on Road||15.4%||19.5%|
|% at Home||16.1%||15.8%|
|Teuvo Teravainen Too many men/ice - bench|
|Corey Perry Hooking against Duncan Keith|
|Jiri Sekac Elbowing against Brent Seabrook|
|Brad Richards Hooking against Emerson Etem|
|Ryan Kesler Tripping against Corey Crawford|
|Andrew Desjardins Interference on goalkeeper against Frederik Andersen|