The Blackhawks and Canucks represent two of the league's dynamic, star-laden teams. Neither has disappointed in fashioning a roller coaster of a Western Conference Semifinal thus far, with Saturday's pivotal Game 5 looming to unlock a 2-2 series.
As we have been doing throughout the playoffs, NHL.com is tracking the Big Moments from every game with you, the fan, voting for your favorites. Below are the Big Moments you have voted for through the first four games of the Western Conference Semifinals between Chicago and Vancouver
Thanks to all who voted -- and enjoy the 2009 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs!
Game 1: VANCOUVER 5, CHICAGO 3
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Salo finishes Hawks (67.52 % of vote)
Having seen their three-goal lead disappear in the third period, the Canucks seemed to be on the ropes. But Sami Salo
reassured the Vancouver faithful that this Canucks team was here to win.
came out of the Vancouver defensive zone and found Mason Raymond
streaking up the ice. Raymond carried the puck in where it became a three-on-one for the Canucks with just defenseman Matt Walker
back. Raymond made an unbelievable pass through the stick of Walker to Bernier, who snapped a quick shot that was stopped by Nikolai Khabibulin
, but Sami Salo
was there to bang home the rebound.
Salo's goal with 1:13 left in regulation lifted the Canucks to a critical Game 1 victory over the Blackhawks.
Game 2: CHICAGO 6, VANCOUVER 3
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Bolland shorthanded breakaway goal (37.80 % of vote)
After surrendering two goals and letting their lead slip away, the Canucks were looking to regain momentum while on the power play, but the Blackhawks had other thoughts.
While shorthanded, Duncan Keith
flipped the puck down ice from his own zone. Out of nowhere, Dave Bolland
grabbed it out of mid-air at the Vancouver blue line. Bolland walked in all alone on Roberto Luongo
and faked backhand, deked to his forehand and slid the puck under Luongo's arm and into the back of the net.
Bolland's goal with 3:10 left in the second period gave the Blackhawks their first lead of the series, a lead they would never look back on in Game 2.
Game 3: VANCOUVER 3, CHICAGO 1
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Lucky Luongo (22.62 % of vote)
The Canucks were holding onto a 3-1 lead going into the third period. With 18:31 remaining, Mattias Ohlund
blocked a shot from Chicago's Dustin Byfuglien
, with the puck deflecting behind Roberto Luongo
, hitting the inside of the post and bouncing into the crease.
The near-goal would have pulled the Blackhawks within one with almost a full period left to play. The Canucks held on instead for the 3-1 win and grabbed a 2-1 lead in their semifinal series.
Game 4: CHICAGO 2, VANCOUVER 1 (OT)
Havlat's tying goal (46.11 % of vote)
With another brilliant performance by Roberto Luongo
leading the way, Vancouver was moments away from taking a 3-1 series lead back to GM Place for a potential series-clincher Saturday night. But as the Hawks and Canucks scrambled for the puck along the boards in the Vancouver zone, Martin Havlat
came up with the rubber and wheeled in between the faceoff circles, where he would wrist a shot past Luongo with 2:44 left.
Havlat's goal woke up a quiet United Center and forced overtime in the Hawks' eventual Game 4 win.
Game 5: CHICAGO 4, VANCOUVER 2
Kane dishes, Bolland delivers (43.01 % of vote)
With the game tied and time winding down, Chicago had control of the puck in Vancouver's zone during a power play. Ryan Johnson
took a backhander that looked lik a sure clear. But Patrick Kane
snatched the puck out of the air at the blue line and came up with the puck again on a rebound seconds later.
Kane moved into the right circle and threw a perfect seam pass to Dave Bolland
, who was waiting near the left dot. Bolland snapped the puck over Roberto Luongo
for the go-ahead goal with 5:05 to go for the game-winner in the Hawks' 4-2 win in Game 5, giving them a chance to wrap up the series at home on Monday night.