After a triple overtime thriller that concluded early Wednesday, the Blackhawks looked to go into Nashville and end the series Thursday night. This was not the case, as after two even periods, the Predators played for their playoff lives in the third period and scored four times to earn a 5-2 win. The series is going back to Chicago for Game 6 with the Blackhawks leading 3-2.
The first period looked about as good as it can get in a tie game. The Blackhawks had countless opportunities throughout the fast paced period, which peaked with Brad Richards being able to get around Cody Franson and put the puck through Pekka Rinne. Throughout the period, Patrick Kane was able to set up several shots that Rinne was able to stop. Right after Richards' goal, the Blackhawks gave one back to the Predators with a shot off a defensive zone face off for Filip Forsberg. This was a period full of both teams going on rush after rush.
The second period was more of the same. Both teams had several solid chances but neither was able to capitalize. By the end of the period, the score remained 1-1 with the shots at 21-20 with the Predators leading.
Things got out of hand quickly for the Blackhawks in the third period. James Neal scored the wraparound goal 48 seconds into the third to give Nashville its first lead of the game. The Predators proceeded to tally two more back to back on a Colin Wilson power play goal followed by an open net shot for Forsberg. Kris Versteeg attempted to spark a comeback when he added a goal on a beautiful pass from Kane with 5:08 left in the third. This comeback was ended when the Predators capped the game off with an empty net hat trick goal for Forsberg.
The Blackhawks and Predators will now head back to Chicago for a Game 6 showdown on Saturday night at 7 p.m.
- Mike Ribeiro’s hit on Kane’s left shoulder near the end of the second was scary, but Kane kept playing which was a relief.
- How about Forsberg not being nominated for the Calder Trophy?
- Thankfully we don’t have to deal with an 8:30 start on Saturday!
- Rinne looked sensational once again after an early Richards’ goal. Rinne stopped 28 of 30.
- The Predators were finally able to get the puck past Darling after three sensational goaltending performances. Darling let up three goals within the first four minutes of the third.
- The goaltending decision in Chicago is about to get even more interesting.
- Quenneville will likely announce his Game 6 starter tomorrow.
- Phil Jackson called the game 5 minutes into the third.