by Vince Maranto on 04/15/12 at 01:45 PM ET
This series certainly has shown a flair for the dramatic. If tying the game with 15 seconds left and an empty net wasn’t exciting enough in Game 1, the Hawks repeated the feat, with 5 seconds left in Game 2! Seabrook played a part in both, scoring and then assisting, respectively. That Overtime win in the first meeting, for Phoenix, really looms larger now. Had the Hawks won, not only would they be up 2 - 0 in the series, but losing back to back games in such fashion would certainly have a demoralizing effect on both the fans and the team. Oh well, IF ......
It was Crawford vs. Smith, as it will be baring any type of injury or COMPLETE melt down by either. Both again showed Play Off net minding skills. The only change in the Hawks line up was Sammy Lepisto as the 6th D-man (replacing O’Donnell). The lines were the same, for the start any way. After the ejection of Shaw, things were shuffled. However, with Coach Q, if he doesn’t see what he likes, things change.
In the 1st period, the Hawks had an early Power Play. It was by far the best looking one that I have seen in a long time. They controlled the puck in the Yotes zone for almost the entire time. Bickell scored with just a few seconds left to go up 1 - 0. He took a rebound out of the air and knocked it passed Smith.
Torres later tied it at 1 - 1. Then (you KNOW how I hate these) a goal tender interference penalty was assessed to Toews. Smith made the initial contact at the side of the crease. A long shot got passed Cro, for their PP goal. 2 - 1 Coyotes. In the end, the Hawks out shot them 17 - 11. I really am happy with the amount of shots taken by the Hawks so far. This has been a problem area from time to time.
In the 2nd period both goalies again, need be mentioned. Bollig got his first NHL goal to tie the game at 2 - 2. A hard snap shot seemed to surprise Smith. THEN (here we go) Smith went behind the net to play the puck. Shaw, coming the other way, tried to go between the goalie and the boards. Their heads met as Smith turned. 5 minute charging and game ejection for Shaw. Again, if you read any of my bogs, I NEVER complain about any penalties except this kind. Goalies are allowed to go any where outside the crease (I know, the “no touch” zones) and the players must avoid them at all costs. I’ve said it several times before & I’ll say it again. I hate this rule. The goalie will always get the benefit of the doubt. And by the way, if they suspend Shaw after ignoring Nashville’s Weber for PURPOSELY bashing the Red Wings players head (was it Franzen, I forget) twice, I will really be upset. OK, ‘nuff said. Crawford was screened as Phoenix went up 3 - 2, during the 5 minute Kill. There was a couple more PP’s for the Hawks, Cro came up big again, & it was 3 - 2 going into the locker room.
In the 3rd period it looked like the Hawks would limp into Chicago being down 2 games to 0. There were forced passes and more line shuffling. Then, as in last game, with around 1 1/2 minutes left Crawford was pulled. This time with 5 seconds left, Seabrook cranked a slap shot that was tipped by Sharp. Overtime.
In the OT, BIG saves by both goalies again were had. However Bickell scored his second of the night to give the Hawks the win and literally STEAL one on the road. The Hawks ended up with 48 shots on goal. Keep ‘em coming guys, I like those numbers!
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