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Blackhawks wrap up Central Division title with 3-2 SO win over Red Wings

Saturday, 04.13.2013 / 12:05 AM / News

The Canadian Press

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Blackhawks wrap up Central Division title with 3-2 SO win over Red Wings

CHICAGO - Brandon Saad scored in the fifth round of the shootout after Jonathan Toews tied the game late in regulation, and the Chicago Blackhawks clinched the Central Division title with a 3-2 victory over the Detroit Red Wings on Friday night.

With St. Louis losing to Columbus earlier Friday, the Blackhawks wrapped up the Central race for the first time since 2010 when they won the Stanley Cup.

Chicago also increased its lead over Anaheim for the top seed in the Western Conference playoffs to seven points.

The shootout was tied 1-1 when Saad beat Jimmy Howard with a backhand shot. Corey Crawford then stopped Johan Franzen, sealing the win and giving the Blackhawks a four-game season sweep over Detroit.

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For six months, it's a really good accomplishment. But as soon as April [11, the end of the regular season] comes around, no one thinks about the regular season anymore. For six months, it's a real battle to get into the playoffs in the NHL these days. There are a lot of good teams, and it takes consistency over a long time.

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