Another chapter in Hawks-Canucks
The Blackhawks' Andrew Shaw, center, celebrates his game-winning overtime goal Wednesday with Johnny Oduya (27) and Niklas Hjalmarsson.
Joel Quenneville knew exactly what was ahead when he met with the media just before Wednesday night's game against Vancouver.
"It doesn't take much to get either team excited when we get together," Quenneville said. "There's a lot of animosity between these teams. This is Game 35 in the last four seasons, and in every game it seems that everybody rises to the challenge and the intensity is there."
Go ahead and mark Game 36 — a 2-1 overtime win by the Blackhawks — as a worthy addition to the series.
This one had a little bit of everything, from Patrick Kane not only scoring his 20th goal of the season but also tossing his weight around with a sweet hit on Andrew Alberts.
Then there was Duncan Keith knocking Daniel Sedin out of the game early and then facing off with his old nemesis Alex Burrows and a number of other Canucks later on a night where scrums were the norm not the exception.
"That's what's fun about the game," said Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo, who had himself quite a duel with the Hawks' Corey Crawford. "Rivalries like that make it exciting to play, whether it's here or in Vancouver.
"They're always fun games to play, and the crowd obviously is into it."
After a sluggish start, the Hawks got into it as well.
Kane started it, and then Andrew Shaw finished it.
The remarkable run of the pesky rookie continued when he deflected in Johnny Oduya's blast midway through OT to give the Hawks their fifth straight win and closing the curtain on one wild game at the United Center.
"It's unbelievable; I can't take any credit, it was a great pass from (Dave Bolland) and that shot from Johnny ended up hitting me and going in," said Shaw, whose 11th goal of the season was his second game-winner.
"I just think that he's got that ingredient that you like as a competitor," Quenneville said. "He finds ways to get the job done. He welcomes any challenge."
The Blackhawks have a 9-1-1 record with Oduya in the lineup. "We needed those 2 points," Shaw said, "and the boys were fired up for it."
How could they not be? This was the Canucks, after all.
"It's one of those love-hate relationships," admitted defenseman Brent Seabrook. "We all love to play in games like that."
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