Friday, April 23, 2010

Game Recap: Hawks Tie Series with 3-0 Win over Preds

Barry Trotz Postgame comments

Jason Arnott, J P Dumont, Pekka Rinne and Dan Hamhuis speak after the game

Coach Joel Quenneville and Brian Campbell speak after the game

The Chicago Blackhawks came back from Tuesday's stunner with a much better effort in game four, beating the Nashville Predators 3-0 to tie the quarterfinal series 2-2.

Chicago got a power play goal from Patrick Sharp at 10:57 in the first period and that was all they needed to cement the win behind Antti Niemi's 33 save shutout performance.

They gained a cushion and then put the game out of reach from the Predators with second period goals from Jonathan Toews and Sharp's second goal of the game.

Pekka Rinne took the loss while stopping 27 of 30 Chicago shots.

Storylines From The Game

The Sleeping Giant Awakens...

Coming into the series Chicago was a heavy favorite to beat the Predators and many pundits had them headed to the Stanley Cup Finals. Tuesday's big win by the Predators appears to have awakened the team that everyone expected to see play in the first three games.

The Blackhawks played a very well executed game and disrupted the Predators efforts for the entire 60 minutes. Jason Arnott explained, " We got away from the little things that we were doing right. It seemed like we wanted to make that extra play to get their guys to move so we could get a shot off.

"We threw 66 pucks at their net We had chances," said Barry Trotz. "In the second period, we had a good push and every time we had a couple of good chances, they (Chicago) came back and scored."

Failure of the Predators Special Teams...

The Predators special teams had plenty of opportunity to make a different in the game. The Predators were 0-5 on the power play including an early five on three opportunity that was cut short when David Legwand plowed over Niemi and was called for interference. The Preds also struggled on the penalty kill giving up one goal in three attempts.

Barry Trotz discussed the disappointment of their five on three man advantage. "We got a five on three power play that we practiced a lot during the break. We shot a lot of pucks but they didn't get through or we missed the net. Just as a good power play can give you momentum, a good penalty kill will also, and I'm sure they fed of off that."

Jason Arnott discussed the power play effort, "They were giving us shots and my shot hit Wardo and Webs got through a few times and just didn't bang it in. The guys batted and worked hard tonight but special teams have to do better."

Preds Never Do Things The Easy Way...

"At lot of things haven't gone well for the last 12 years so we are well versed in the hardness of the game and finding ways to win and getting the job done so I think we've got a good foundation for that," said Trotz. "We're going to go into a very hostile environment in Chicago and we are going to have to play a great game, plain and simple."

Jason Arnott summed up the situation, "It's 2-2 now and we knew this wasn't going to be easy because it is a great hockey team that we are playing. We've got to put this behind us and get ready for Saturday."

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

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