DETROIT -- The Chicago Blackhawks have talked a lot about momentum in the past few days, and how they believe it finally is shifting to their side after falling behind 3-1 in this Western Conference Semifinal series with the Detroit Red Wings before handily winning Game 5 at United Center.
The Red Wings also have talked a lot about momentum -- about how they don't believe it exists in a playoff series. While both teams are taking the obvious side of a decades-old argument -- certainly the Blackhawks hope they have some momentum and the Red Wings believe they don't -- how Game 6 of the series starts Monday at Joe Louis Arena (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, CBC, RDS) probably will play into the narrative for one side or the other.
"For us, I think we just need to seize the momentum we have here and carry it into Game 6," Chicago forward Patrick Kane said. "It was fun playing in Game 5. That's the way we need to play. I think we had close to 50 shots, pretty much every line was rolling, we had some power-play goals and obviously we got the lead at the start. Hopefully we can get some more of that [in Game 6] and build off it."
The first period generally has been an even one in this series, though the Blackhawks have scored three of the four goals in the opening 20 minutes. It didn't matter in Game 2 -- the Red Wings roared back with four straight to steal at a road win.
Detroit did push back again in Game 5 after falling behind, but Chicago eventually overwhelmed the Red Wings. Now, the Blackhawks will want to start well and try to find a snowball effect -- if momentum really does exist.
"It isn't so much about scoring but taking control of the game and letting them know that we're going to be coming at them all night," Detroit defenseman Kyle Quincey said. "We've got to skate better. They definitely outworked us [in Game 5], and that can't happen."
Here are the projected lineups for both teams: