Stanley Cup Final: Blackhawks Take 3-2 Series Lead On Kane’s Big Night
Last night’s game 5 effort from the Boston Bruins was nothing short of a massive disappointment. They failed to put any consistency together, and they looked more like the mediocre team they were during the regular season, as opposed to the elite defensive team they have been in the postseason.
Chicago’s Patrick Kane had a big night scoring 2 goals for his club. His first goal was a lucky bouncy off of a Johnny Oduya rebound. The rebound bounced to Kane, and he tucked it in past Rask to make it 1-0. It was a tough goal to give up considering the fact that it was late in the period, and the Bruins were in pretty solid shape before the goal.
Both teams traded chances in the first period while the Bruins outhit and outshot the Hawks. Unfortunately the B’s were not rewarded, and they entered the second period down a goal.
The second period didn’t go the Bruins’ way either, as Kane struck for his second with a bottle popping backhand. Rask was essentially helpless on the goal. Bryan Bickell circled around the net and put the puck in front of Rask. Zdeno Chara played the man instead of the puck, and allowed Kane to scoop up the freebie and lift it over a sprawled out Rask. This goal really deflated the Bruins it seemed, and the Hawks carried the play for the rest of the second.
Patrice Bergeron also left the game in the second period, and he did not return. It was later reported that he had left the arena for treatment at a local Chicago hospital. It is unclear as to what the severity of the injury could be, but the fact that he had to go to the hospital is not a good sign.
The start of the third period provided some hope for all the fans who suffered through the pathetic first two frames. Chara absolutely bombed a shot past Corey Crawford (glove side again) early, and the Bruins got some serious life out of it. They began taking it to the Hawks like we have been accustomed to seeing. Unfortunately the pressure could not be sustained with the loss of Bergeron, and Claude Julien’s desperate attempts at mixing up his lines.
Chicago’s Dave Bolland added the empty netter late, and put the Bruins away while the Hawks took a significant 3-2 series lead. Game five wasn’t a good look for Boston, but those who think the series is over are out to lunch.
The Bruins still have a game at home, and if they can win that game all bets are off for game seven. I was really hoping the B’s would pull game 5 out for the sake of taking a series lead back to Boston, but I was left disappointed. The Bruins’ new goal now is to force a decisive game seven in Chicago, and go from there.
I do believe this team has the ability to play better and get themselves in a spot to win the Stanley Cup, but they will need to play the best game of their collective lives to force game seven, and then expand upon it should they be fortunate enough to tie the series. The Hawks have exploited the Dennis Seidenberg and Zdeno Chara pairing. The adjustments Claude made by moving Johnny Boychuk up with Chara, and Seidenberg down with Andrew Ference will likely carry over into game six. I believe this move contributed to the Bruins’ stronger play in the 3rd period of game five.
I am doing my best not to get too cynical about the Bruins’ chances in game six, but I won’t lie to you. If Bergeron can’t play, and Boychuk gets suspended for his hit on Jonathan Toews, the B’s chances are pretty bleak. Stranger things have happened though. Don’t forget; the Bruins were in this same spot in 2011 too.
You can follow me on Twitter here: @Mattjacob64