by Vince Maranto on 03/30/12 at 02:55 PM ET
The Hawks finished their 6 game, regular season meetings with a shoot out win over the St. Louis Blues. The Hawks took the series 4 - 2. It was Crawford (27-17-6) against Halak (25-11-6) and his NHL second best 1.90 goals against average. Halak started despite Elliot having 3 shut outs in a row. The two goalies have 15 between them. If that isn’t the quintessential embarrassment of riches, I don’t know what is! It was the usual hard hitting, physical game between Chicago and the best defensive team in the league, St. Louis.
The Hawks and their MISERABLE Power Play (ZERO shots on goal in their last 8 chances!!) managed to at least get one shot off, 2 minutes into the game. They were down to 15%, 25th in the league to start the game. The Blues had a 96% Penalty Kill in the last 23 games. No surprise that they are fighting for the President’s Trophy. Bickell put the Hawks on the board first with a hard snap shot. Just 9 seconds later, the Blues tied it at 1 - 1. The shot went off the post, hit the back of Crawford & trickled in. With 25 seconds left in the period, Shaw had a dumb roughing penalty that would carry over into the second period. The Hawks Penalty Kill is tied for 26th in the league at 78%./ When you look at the PP & PK, it’s nothing short of AMAZING that this team is about to clinch a play off spot! The Hawks out shot the Blues 14 - 8.
The Hawks had a very aggressive, and successful PK to begin the 2nd period. Later, Halak had a great save on Sharp, and Hossa had a wide open net shot blocked. Halfway through the game the shots on goal favored the hawks 19 - 8. Another PK for the Hawks (too many men) was successful. With 3 minutes left, Kane, who actually shot instead of passing, rang one square off the iron. Another Power Play yielded nothing and the score remained the same. The Hawks out shot the Blues again, this time 10 - 3.
Crawford had a great save in the early stages of the 3rd period. Then, in a mad scramble in front of Halak, with Hossa, and Kane, Brunette broke the tie. 2 - 1 Hawks. Sharp was AGAIN denied by Halak around 4 minutes in, making it the 3rd time in the game that Sharpie had a great opportunity. However, on a 2 on 0 break, it was Stalberg to Sharp, to break the curse. 3 - 1 Hawks with 12 minutes to go. A very weak wrap around, that Crawford was positioned for, somehow went in, to cut the lead to one. Then, with 1 1/2 minutes left in the game, you could feel it coming, the Blues tied it on a redirect. 3 - 3 game. On to overtime.
The overtime went back and forth, but no score.
In the shoot out, it was scoreless, until Bolland put the Hawks up. Crawford came through with the save and the Hawks got their 2 points.
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