CHICAGO (AP) — Chris Kelly scored after goalie Tuukka Rask kept Boston in the game, and the Bruins were tied with the Chicago Blackhawks 1-1 through two periods in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup finals on Saturday night.
The Blackhawks swarmed the Bruins in the early going after escaping with a 4-3 triple-overtime victory in the series opener, taking the lead in the first on Patrick Sharp's ninth goal of the postseason.
They continued to dictate the tempo until Kelly tied it with just over five minutes remaining in the second.
Boston's Daniel Paille skated out from behind the net, beating Nick Leddy with a neat move for a wraparound shot. Corey Crawford made the save, but Kelly crashed the net and knocked in the rebound to tie it at 1-all.
The Bruins nearly grabbed the lead with just over a minute remaining, after Paille picked off Duncan Keith's pass and flipped the puck to a breaking Brad Marchand. He got pulled down by Brent Seabrook as his shot hit the inside of the right post, preserving the tie.
Either way, the Bruins had to like the way the period ended after being dominated most of the way.
They ended up outshooting Chicago 8-4 in the second after getting outgunned 19-4 in that area in the first.
Rask had 22 saves through the first two periods while Crawford had 11.
The Blackhawks teed off in the early going and finally broke through with 8:38 left after Rask stopped a backhand and wrist shot by Patrick Kane.
The flurry continued with a slapshot by Michael Rozsival, and with the Bruins scrambling in the zone, Sharp wound up with the puck on the right side. He fired it past a screened Rask to give the Blackhawks the lead, with the Bruins' Kaspars Daugavins and Andrew Ference jammed in front trying to cover Dave Bolland.
Chicago continued the siege against Rask, who had 18 saves in the period, but couldn't add to the lead.
Then again, the Bruins couldn't get anything going on offense. Sharp alone had more shots than them in the opening period with six, and things didn't get much better for Boston in the second.
Corey Crawford wasn't really tested in the early going, other than a nice glove save on a high shot by Jaromir Jagr midway through the first period and point-blank stop on Rich Peverley with 1:35 remaining.
Star wing Nathan Horton was in the lineup for the Bruins after leaving the series opener with an injured left shoulder, a huge boost for a team trying to tie the series.
Horton got tangled up with Chicago's Niklas Hjalmarsson in the first overtime, a pivotal moment for a key player to go down. But after watching Horton practice on Friday and skate on Saturday, coach Claude Julien declared him ready, saying he saw "absolutely no reason" not to play him.
For excitement alone, it would be hard to match what happened in Game 1, let alone top it. How could they?
From the late rally in regulation by the Blackhawks to the string of spectacular saves by Crawford to Jagr's near-miss off the post and, finally, Andrew Shaw's double-deflection goal to win it, that one was simply breathtaking. It added up to the fifth-longest Stanley Cup finals game in league history and a 1-0 series lead for Chicago.
- Sports & Recreation
- Ice Hockey
- Tuukka Rask
- Chicago Blackhawks
- Corey Crawford
- Chris Kelly