Road to the Stanley Cup: Blackhawks vs. Wild

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Blackhawks left wing Patrick Sharp, left, celebrates with teammates and the crowd after his third-period goal against the Minnesota Wild in Game 2 of the Western Conference second-round Stanley Cup playoff series at the United Center in Chicago.

    Blackhawks left wing Patrick Sharp, left, celebrates with teammates and the crowd after his third-period goal against the Minnesota Wild in Game 2 of the Western Conference second-round Stanley Cup playoff series at the United Center in Chicago. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Goalie Corey Crawford swats away a shot by Minnesota Wild center Mikko Koivu during the first period of Game 4 in the second round of the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs May 7 in St. Paul, Minn.

    Goalie Corey Crawford swats away a shot by Minnesota Wild center Mikko Koivu during the first period of Game 4 in the second round of the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs May 7 in St. Paul, Minn. Associated Press

 
By Renee Griffin
rgriffin@dailyherald.com
Posted6/20/2015 6:00 AM

Although three games in this series were decided by one goal, the Blackhawks jumped out early and got strong support from Corey Crawford, who secured his spot in net. Equally important, the Blackhawks earned a sweep and some time off to rest and heal for the next round.

Hawks 4, Wild 3

 

Game 1: Blackhawks vs. Minnesota Wild, Western Conference second round, May 1 at Chicago

Recap: The Hawks jumped ahead 3-0 via first-period goals from Brandon Saad, Patrick Kane, and Marcus Kruger, with the first strike from Saad just 75 seconds after the puck dropped. Minnesota stormed back with three goals in the first 10 minutes of the second period. When Teuvo Teravainen notched his first postseason goal near the end of the second, the Hawks regained and held the lead.

John Dietz's stars of the game: Teravainen, Saad, Brad Richards

Quote: "It wasn't the biggest shot, but sometimes good things happen when I shoot."-- Teravainen

Hawks 4, Wild 1

Game 2: May 3 at Chicago

Recap: The game was scoreless into the middle of the second period, but a two-man breakaway by Marian Hossa and Jonathan Toews resulted in a goal for Toews. Subsequent goals by Patrick Kane and Patrick Sharp put the game out of the Wild's reach, with a late empty-netter by Kane solidifying the Blackhawks' second win of the series. Corey Crawford made 30 saves.

Stars of the game: Crawford, Hossa, Toews

Quote: "It was our best game all the way around. Real good pace and energy from the outset. Good pace to our game defensively, solid throughout all four lines. Played the right way." -- Joel Quenneville

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Hawks 1, Wild 0

Game 3: May 5 at Minnesota

Recap: Corey Crawford had 30 saves in this shutout on the road, erasing memories of when he was benched during the first playoff series with a struggling defense in front of him. Patrick Kane continued his hot streak by marking the game's only goal during a first-period power play, giving him 6 goals in this postseason.

Stars of the game: Crawford, Kane, Wild's Devan Dubnyk

Quote: "He's got a hot stick and he's dangerous. I think he gives a lot of different looks to the goalies. You don't know where it's coming off his stick. He's got some torque to it as well." -- Quenneville on Kane

Hawks 4, Wild 3

Game 4: May 7 at Minnesota

Recap: Goals from Brent Seabrook and Andrew Shaw had the Blackhawks up 2-0 well into the second period, but a Minnesota score put the Wild back in it. However, Patrick Kane gave the Hawks some breathing room with a third-period goal, and a Marian Hossa empty-netter widened the lead to 4-1. Two late goals by the Wild in a 51-second span made the Hawks sweat, but they escaped with the win and a sweep of Minnesota.

Stars of the game: Crawford, Hossa, Kane

Quote: "Not a textbook finish. But still found a way. Other than that, we played a great hockey game. We knew they were going to give everything they could to fight back in the series. It was an exciting finish to say the least." -- Corey Crawford

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