Game 7 a new deal for most Hawks
Patrick Kane's memories of the last time he played in a Game 7 are crystal clear.
"It was in the OHL," Kane said Monday before the Blackhawks took off for Vancouver. "We were actually up 3-0 (in the series) and the Soo Greyhounds came back to tie it 3-3.
"We ended up winning it at home; I think it was 7-4 … I had 5 points."
Dave Bolland's memories of his last Game 7? Uh, not so clear.
"I think maybe last season," he said. "I don't know."
No, it wasn't last season.
"Two years ago?"
The bottom line for the Blackhawks is, despite all the playoff series they've been a part of the past few years, none have gone seven games.
In fact, only a handful of veterans on the team have even participated in a Game 7, NHL style.
Hawks coach Joel Quenneville gives that a big yeah, but …
"We've played on some big stages the last three years," he said. "You've got a chance to play for the Cup or a chance to play in a Game 7 — there's a lot of different (big) games some of these guys have played in the past few years."
Plus, with the way the regular season came down to the very last game, and then having to battle back from a 3-0 deficit against Vancouver, it's almost as if every game lately has been a Game 7.
"They felt like it," Bolland admitted. "We were facing elimination; we had nothing to lose — go out there and play. I think that's what we did; we went out there and played and played hard and I think we played great.
"It will be a lot of our first Game 7s here, so I think our guys are going to be excited. Guys will be pretty jumpy and ready to go."
"It's exciting. I was saying that the other night … I haven't been in a Game 7 in the NHL yet," Kane said. "I think we battled a long way back. We were hoping to get to Game 7 in Vancouver, and then anything can happen."
It sure doesn't hurt that the Canucks are starting to feel some intense heat heading into the final game of the series.
"I still feel all the pressure's on them. They're the ones up 3-0, they're the first seed in the West," Kane said, "They were kind of predicted to win the Cup this year and go really far. We didn't really have any of that pressure on us."
Some new Game 7 memories await.
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