Monday, April 25, 2016

Brouwer, Blues, Eliminate Blackhawks With 3-2 Win

Game Seven.  The most exciting words in all of sports.  The Chicago Blackhawks visited the St. Louis Blues for the right to move onto the second round of the 2016 Stanley cup Playoffs.  In the end, ex-Blackhawk, Troy Brouwer, was the deciding factor as he had the game-winning goal, half way through the third period.

The Blues came out with the energy early as just 1:00 into the game, Jori Lehtera deflected a Jay Bouwmesster shot, and it bounced into the net for a very early, 1-0, Blues lead.  Colton Parayko gave the Blues a 2-0 lead as he slapped a shot from the point that found the back of the net.  Marian Hossa brought life back into the Blackhawks as he let go a slapshot from the high post that blew by Brian Elliott, to make it 2-1 just before the end of the period.  The Blackhawks were outplayed most of the period, but led in SOG, 11-9. 

The second period saw the Blackhawks start where the first period ended.  On the power play, Andrew Shaw centered a pass in the crease that deflected off of the skate of Bouwmeester and into the net to tie the game just 3:20 into the period.  From there, a goalie clinic was put on between Crawford and Elliott.  Both teams with golden opportunities, but no pucks would pass either goal line for the remainder of the period.  SOG favored the Hawks, 24-21.

In the third, it was Brouwer who put the Blues up, 3-2, when he was left alone to take a shot, miss on his rebound, and then get another chance to bury it into the net beyond Crawford with 11:29 remaining in the period.  With under 5 minutes left, Brent Seabrook rattled one off of both goal posts, and had it kicked out.  Bounces like that went that way all series for the Hawks.
Notable Mentions: This was the first playoff season to see Jonathan Toews held without a goal.  He did have six assists in the series.  David Rundblad is still horrible and hopefully has played his last game as a Blackhawk.  Just plain awful.  This is only the 3rd time in 8 years that the Blackhawks have not made it to the Western Conference Finals.

Three Stars Of The Game
1st - STL - Troy Brouwer - 1G, 6 hits
2nd - STL - Brian Elliott - 31 saves,  .939 SV%
3rd - STL - Robby Fabbri - 1A, 3 shots

The Blackhawks gave their all.  I'm still proud to call myself a fan.  Thank you for a great season cut short in the playoffs.


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