Blackhawks beat Canucks 7-5, win series 4-2

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Chicago Blackhawks' Patrick Kane, right, celebrates with Brian Campbell after scoring his goal against the Vancouver Canucks during the third period of Game 6 of the NHL hockey Western Conference semifinal, Monday,

    Chicago Blackhawks' Patrick Kane, right, celebrates with Brian Campbell after scoring his goal against the Vancouver Canucks during the third period of Game 6 of the NHL hockey Western Conference semifinal, Monday, Associated Press

  • Chicago Blackhawks' Jonathan Toews, left, scores on Vancouver Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo during the second period in Game 6 of the NHL Western Conference semifinal hockey series Monday.

    Chicago Blackhawks' Jonathan Toews, left, scores on Vancouver Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo during the second period in Game 6 of the NHL Western Conference semifinal hockey series Monday. Associated Press

 
 
Updated 5/12/2009 7:01 AM

The Vancouver Canucks did not go quietly, but they are gone.

On a night when the Blackhawks maybe didn't bring their best game defensively, they found a way to win by unleashing their offensive firepower in the third period in one of the more incredible hockey games in memory played in Chicago.

 

The Hawks rallied from behind twice in the third period to eliminate the Canucks 7-5 and advance to the Western Conference finals for the first time since 1995.

"That was unbelievable to be a part of," said Patrick Kane, who completed his first career hat trick in a wild and crazy third period that saw the Hawks score four times.

"They say Bruce Springsteen is up next (tonight at the United Center). He might have trouble putting on the same show we did. That was unbelievable, that third period."

The Hawks will meet the winner of the Detroit-Anaheim series for the right to go to the Stanley Cup Finals.

"It really hasn't sunk in yet, but it will," said Adam Burish, who scored a key third-period goal to help fuel the comeback.

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"It's an accomplishment to get to the last four, but at the same time it's not what we want," Duncan Keith said. "It's not what our ultimate goal is, and that's to win the next series and be in the Finals.

In addition to Kane's hat trick, Jonathan Toews scored twice as the Hawks took the Western Conference semifinal series 4-2.

The Hawks trailed 5-4 when Kane stuffed one past Roberto Luongo with seven minutes to play. The goal came just 45 seconds after Daniel Sedin had scored to put the Canucks ahead.

"That was a huge goal, right away on the next shift," Keith said. "You could easily get down and, boom, we scored and we're right back in it again.

"I think Kaner was the difference tonight, getting that wraparound goal and then the seventh one to put the nail in the coffin. It was a little frustrating in the third period, seesaw back and forth, and we were getting penalties and they were scoring."

Just 49 seconds later on a power play, a shot by Toews deflected in the net off defenseman Alex Edler to put the Hawks ahead 6-5.

Kane then blew the roof off the joint with a backhander past Luongo with 3:43 left.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

"Kaner has scored some big goals all year but none bigger than the ones late in the game," Hawks coach Joel Quenneville said.

"What a circus it was out there with the building and the crowd," Burish said. "It was crazy. It was like nothing I've ever been part of."

The teams combined for 6 goals in the back-and-forth third period.

"That was one of the wildest third periods I've ever seen," Quenneville said.

The Hawks now are off to a place they may not have expected to be.

"Going into the playoffs we were a work in progress," Quenneville said. "We didn't know. There was a lot to be excited about our team. These guys each and every day have been getting some education in games."

It was 3-3 going to the third period when the Hawks got caught with too many men on the ice at 1:48, which the Canucks turned into a power-play goal by Mats Sundin for the lead.

The Hawks regrouped then tied it at 5:41 when Burish scored from in the slot on a snap shot past Luongo.

"It was hard not to get down after we fell behind a second time, but it's a 60-minute game," Patrick Sharp said. "We had different guys step up."

The Canucks were relentless in pushing the Hawks to the brink of breaking.

"I'm worn out from that series," Burish said. "That was a tough, tough series to play."

The Hawks say they have no preference on an opponent in the West finals. The Red Wings lead that series 3-2 with Game 6 tonight in Anaheim.

"We'll just be watching to see what happens," Sharp said.

The Hawks had a chance to play with the lead and weren't very good at it. They took a 3-1 lead midway through the second period on Toews' first goal of the series, but it was 3-3 going to the third after Vancouver rallied on goals by Daniel Sedin and Shane O'Brien.

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