Stanley Cup Game 5 blog

After an 11-goal shootout had us on the edge of our seats in
Game 4, the Blackhawks and Bruins got back to playing like the
first-rate defensive teams that they are in Game 5 of the
deadlocked Stanley Cup Finals on Saturday, with Chicago grabbing a
3-1 win and moving within a win of the title.

Here’s how it all went down.

After 20 minutes, the Blackhawks led 1-0 at home, the one goal
coming on Patrick Kane’s putback of a Johnny Oduya shot with
2:33 left in the frame. The goal is Kane’s second of the
series, and you can see it, in all its glory, below:

Coming into the game, the focus was undoubtedly on the
goaltenders, with many curious to see how Boston’s Tuukka
Rask and Chicago’s Corey Crawford would respond to their
respective trainwrecks Wednesday in Boston. In the first period
Saturday, Crawford made 11 saves and Rask stopped seven of eight
shots, including this little ditty:

In the second period, however, Kane’s dominance continued
— or maybe it was Rask regressing to the Rask of Game 4?
— as he gave the Blackhawks a 2-0 lead on an even-strength
goal 5:13 into the frame. Kane now has nine goals for the
postseason and has plenty of time left to pick up a third goal for
his second hat trick in his last six games.

Kane’s second goal would represent all of the scoring for the
second period, however, and the Blackhawks now find themselves up
2-0 with 20 minutes standing between themselves and a 3-2 series
lead. Michelle Pfeiffer is thrilled by this development:

Check out Nathan Horton’s stitched-up face after taking a puck
to the eye on his own bench during the first period.

There has also been quite a bit of talk about this check from
the middle of the second period:

It’s worth mentioning Michal Handzus’ penalty for diving. You
don’t see that called very often, mostly because hockey players
aren’t the types for embellishment:

Zdeno Chara is a big, big man who has won the last five All-Star
Weekend hardest shot contests — including a staggering 108.8
mph blast at the most recent contest, in 2012.

In the third period of Game 5, Chara finally put that wicked
slap shot to use for the first time since Game 1 of the conference
quarterfinals, going top-shelf past Blackhawks netminder Corey
Crawford to cut the Chicago lead to 2-1 with 16:20 left to
play.

And here’s the video of the Chara goal that made it 2-1.
Crawford never had a chance:

NBC and CBC just reported that Patrice Bergeron has left the
arena in an ambulance to be evaluated following an injury that had
kept him off the ice for most of the night so far. The thought, per
Twitter, is that he might have injured himself on this play, though
there’s no obvious injury in it:

Mike Milbury said Bergeron came out for one more shift after the
play in the video, but that he was only on the ice for “6 or 7
seconds” before returning to the bench. When the third period
started, he was no longer on the bench with the team, and about
midway through, they announced that he had left the building in an
ambulance.

Boston tried to make things interesting late, peppering Crawford
with shots late in the third period, but Crawford held strong and
Dave Bolland scored his second goal of the playoffs on an
empty-netter from the red line to seal the Blackhawks’ 3-1 win with
14 seconds to play.

Chicago now leads the series 3-2, and on Monday in Boston, the
Blackhawks will have a chance to secure their second Stanley Cup
championship in four years after a 49-year drought. Here is how
Bruins left-winger Milan Lucic felt about that development in the
seconds after Game 5 ended: