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Blackhawks vs Kings

(Page 2 of 5)
Blackhawks vs Kings - 2014 Western Conference Final

Patrick Kane comes up big again for Blackhawks

Saturday, 05.31.2014 / 2:03 AM / Blackhawks vs Kings - 2014 Western Conference Final

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

LOS ANGELES -- Patrick Kane won the Conn Smythe Trophy last spring. He's making a big push to do it again.

Kane had two goals and an assist Friday night to help the Chicago Blackhawks avoid elimination and force a Game 7 in the Western Conference Final with a 4-3 victory against the Los Angeles Kings. He has seven points in the past two games as the Blackhawks have come back from a 3-1 deficit to level this series with the Kings.

The Blackhawks have become incredible closers, taking control of series as they progress. Chicago has won 25 of 29 games after Game 4 in a series with Kane and Jonathan Toews on the roster, including 13 in a row in 2013 and 2014.

Chicago is 12-2 in Games 6 or 7 in their careers. Kane has nine goals and 17 points in those games, including his famous Stanley Cup-winning overtime goal in Game 6 of the 2010 Final.


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Doughty's big third period nearly gets Kings to Final

Saturday, 05.31.2014 / 1:31 AM / Blackhawks vs Kings - 2014 Western Conference Final

Curtis Zupke - NHL.com Correspondent

LOS ANGELES -- Los Angeles Kings defenseman Alec Martinez sat a few lockers down from Drew Doughty and stated what was difficult to argue.

"Drew, as far as I'm concerned, is the best defenseman in the world," Martinez said.

That was quite a proclamation considering the way the Kings and Chicago Blackhawks exchanged blows in a 4-3 Chicago win in Game 6 of the Western Conference Final on Friday at Staples Center. But what was left in the remnants of a Kings loss was another remarkable display by Doughty in his finest Stanley Cup Playoffs yet.


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Saad taking game to new heights for Blackhawks

Thursday, 05.29.2014 / 6:37 PM / Blackhawks vs Kings - 2014 Western Conference Final

Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent

CHICAGO -- Brandon Saad is developing into an elite two-way forward for the Chicago Blackhawks, and the game he helped win Wednesday at United Center might someday be looked upon as the night he made the jump from good to great.

Saad was one of the most dominant players on the ice for the Blackhawks in Game 5 of the Western Conference Final against the Los Angeles Kings, a game they had to win to avoid elimination. He scored in the first period and assisted on Chicago's last two goals in a 5-4 double-overtime win. His second assist was a beautiful feed to Michal Handzus for the game-winner.

But Saad was just as good in areas of the game that aren't as easily noticed.


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Kings miss chance to put away defending champs

Thursday, 05.29.2014 / 2:33 AM / Blackhawks vs Kings - 2014 Western Conference Final

Shawn Roarke - Director, Editorial

CHICAGO -- Los Angeles Kings defenseman Drew Doughty understood the opportunity his team squandered Wednesday at United Center in Game 5 of the Western Conference Final.

The Chicago Blackhawks rallied for the first time in this series, turning a one-goal deficit at the start of the third period into a stunning 5-4 victory in double overtime.

Ben Smith scored the tying goal 77 seconds into the third period, and Michal Handzus won it in overtime with a beautiful backhander. Handzus, who had one postseason goal entering the game, played a mere nine shifts between the end of the second period and his game-winner.


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Handzus' 2OT goal saves Blackhawks' season

Thursday, 05.29.2014 / 2:03 AM / Blackhawks vs Kings - 2014 Western Conference Final

Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent

CHICAGO -- Michal Handzus has been maligned for his play during in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs, but the goal he scored Wednesday for the Chicago Blackhawks was literally a season-saver.

Handzus scored his second goal of the postseason 2:04 into double overtime to beat the Los Angeles Kings 5-4 at United Center and force the Western Conference Final to a Game 6 on Friday at Staples Center (9 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

The Kings lead the best-of-7 series 3-2.

Handzus played 14:30 in Game 5 but saw the ice for 1:38 in the third period, 2:43 in the first overtime and 19 seconds in the second OT. He came into the game minus-6 with two points (one goal) in Chicago's 16 previous postseason games.

"You still have to have a lot of confidence in yourself," the 37-year-old center said. "I'm not real happy how [I've] played, but [I've] just got to be confident. It's a lot of fun to be playing in the playoffs. It's conference finals. You cannot just look at yourself all the time, be down [and] be disappointed. You just got to be positive. If you don't want be positive, then probably you won't get out of the slump or anything. I stay positive. I'm [a] better player than [I've] showed. [I'll] try to show it next game again."

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Blackhawks show heart, resiliency in Game 5 win

Thursday, 05.29.2014 / 1:51 AM / Blackhawks vs Kings - 2014 Western Conference Final

Shawn Roarke - Director, Editorial

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Blackhawks believed they were going to pull themselves off the proverbial canvas and deliver a night to remember in Game 5 of the Western Conference Final at United Center.

Sure, the Los Angeles Kings had delivered three straight haymakers with a run of three straight wins to take a stranglehold in this best-of-7 series, rocking the defending champions to the very limit of their endurance in the process.

When the puck dropped for Game 5, the Blackhawks had no goal other than to play their best game, something they believe they have not come close to doing yet in this series. It was as much about delivering a statement about who they are as an organization as it was about winning the game and getting the series back to Los Angeles for Game 6 on Friday (9 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

In the end, they did both.

Yes, they won an instant classic with a 5-4 victory in double overtime, delivered by the unlikeliest of heroes, Michal Handzus. But they also delivered a vintage Blackhawks performance along the way, turning in a showing which will be added to the lore of what has been accomplished at the Madhouse on Madison.

"It's a special group," Chicago forward Patrick Kane said. "I think we know that in the locker room. It seems like in a lot of games we find ways to win, whether we should or not."

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Centers playing big role in Kings' playoff run

Tuesday, 05.27.2014 / 10:26 PM / Blackhawks vs Kings - 2014 Western Conference Final

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

CHICAGO -- Two years ago, the Los Angeles Kings fashioned their own version of the old "Pittsburgh model" of roster construction en route to winning the Stanley Cup.

Anze Kopitar, Mike Richards and Jarret Stoll became Los Angeles' version of Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Jordan Staal, and the Kings rolled through the Stanley Cup Playoffs, going 16-4 on their way to their first championship.

Late this season, coach Darryl Sutter moved Jeff Carter to center. Given the way this postseason is progressing, having four quality centers might be referred to as the "Los Angeles model" moving forward.

"Doesn't matter who we have there, we feel we match up with anybody," Carter said. "I think with the way we have it set up now, four solid lines, it's tough matchups for teams. Any of our lines can play against the top line on the opposing team. It's been working well for us. I think we found some chemistry on all our lines. I think everybody is comfortable in the roles they're in. It's been going good."

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Special teams hurting Blackhawks against Kings

Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Blackhawks have won the Stanley Cup with a lagging power play before, but if they have any chance of defending their 2013 championship they must fix a broken unit in the Western Conference Final.

The Blackhawks, who've lost three straight games and trail the Los Angeles Kings 3-1 in the best-of-7 series, have allowed five power-play goals on 10 man-advantage opportunities for the Kings.

The 50-percent success rate is stunning heading into Game 5 on Wednesday at United Center (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, RDS), considering the Blackhawks led the NHL postseason in killing penalties at 91.3 percent through the first two rounds, allowing four goals on 46 power plays.

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Five ways Blackhawks can extend series vs. Kings

Shawn Roarke - Director, Editorial

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Blackhawks will have history and confidence on their side when they try to win three games on the run to escape a mess that has them on the verge of losing the Western Conference Final and forfeiting the opportunity to defend the Stanley Cup they won last June.

They begin the quest in Game 5 on Wednesday against the Los Angeles Kings at United Center (8 p.m.; NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

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Murphy: Kings winning net-front battles at both ends

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

For additional insight into the Stanley Cup Playoff series between the Chicago Blackhawks and Los Angeles Kings, NHL.com has enlisted the help of former NHL assistant coach Gord Murphy to break down the action. Murphy will be checking in throughout the series.

Murphy enjoyed a 14-season career as an NHL defenseman before spending seven seasons as an assistant coach with the Columbus Blue Jackets and most recently serving as an assistant coach with the Florida Panthers.

In the Stanley Cup Playoffs there are very few of what fans might call pretty goals. The pucks that go in are not much farther than a stick blade away from the front of the net.

According to longtime NHL assistant coach Gord Murphy, the Los Angeles Kings lead the Chicago Blackhawks 3-1 in the best-of-7 Western Conference Final because they're winning the majority of the battles in front of both nets.

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Quote of the Day

I'm hoping Bob [Murray] didn't go out and get Dany Heatley just to get someone. I'm sure he's excited and motivated.

— Anaheim Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau on general manager Bob Murray's decision to sign Dany Heatley