I will be dead honest with everyone here, I really do not care about hockey nor do I know a whole ton about it. With the lack of coverage this sport gets on Sports with Neil, however, I thought it was only fair I did a piece on a do-or-die game in their respective playoffs. The winner of this game would advance to face the Dallas Stars in the Western Conference Semifinals.
As the announcer went through the names of famous hockey players who have played for these two franchises I realized I had no idea who any of these people were. I might know who Wayne Gretzky is, and that’s about it. People are really amped up though, and without further ado the beginning of the end of this First-Round series started.
It was hardly a minute into the First Period and we already had our first goal. Jori Lehtera scored with 19:00 remaining in the opening period to give the Blues a 1-0 lead. Colton Parayko scored a second goal for the Blues to make the score 2-0 with 6:17 remaining in the period. Chicago finally got on the board when Marian Hossa scored a goal with 1:30 remaining in the period.
The second period started with the Blackhawks Andrew Shaw scoring on a Power Play with 16:40 remaining to tie the score up at 2-2. Things were definitely getting interesting. Based off of what I heard of the Blues First Round struggles (they had been eliminated three straight years) it was clear to me that Chicago had the momentum. That was the end of the scoring in the Second Period.
The Blues had a great chance to score on a Power Play early in the Third Period, but unfortunately they were unable to convert. Fortunately though they were able to capitalize when Troy Brouwer scored with 11:29 remaining in the period. That proved to be the deciding goal as the Blues advanced with a 3-2 victory over the Blackhawks to face the Stars in the next round. Late in the game the Blackhawks had a shot on goal that all but went in, hitting both posts, but close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.
Both goalies were brilliant. Corey Crawford had 23 saves for the Blackhawks, but it will be remembered more for the play of Blues goalie Brian Elliot, with his 31 saves and sheer dumb luck for the goal that wasn’t. The Blackhawks had 33 shots on goal to the Blues 26, but St. Louis made the three that counted.