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Blackhawks win extra long Game 1 over Bruins

06.13.13 at 1:02 am ET
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CHICAGO — The Bruins’ third-period blown lead was long forgotten by the time the Blackhawks took Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals. Andrew Shaw sealed the 4-3 Chicago win 12:08 into triple-overtime to give the Blackhawks the early series lead.

The game was reminiscent of the regular season: The Blackhawks looked like the squad that was the best team in the league in the regular season, while the Bruins brought back a regular-season habit of giving up a third-period lead by letting Chicago come back from two goals behind.

Milan Lucic opened the series’ scoring 13:11 into the first period and made it 2-0 just 51 seconds into the second period, but the Blackhawks got on the board shortly after when Brandon Saad broke Tuukka Rask‘s scoreless streak at 149:36. Patrice Bergeron made it 3-1 with a power play goal at 6:09 of the third period, but the Blackhawks stormed back to tie it with goals from Dave Bolland and Johnny Oduya, the latter of which was a slap shot from the point that bounced off Andrew Ference‘s skate and past Rask in front.

By scoring four goals, the Blackhawks got twice as many goals past Rask in one game than the Penguins did in the entire Eastern Conference finals, as Pittsburgh scored just twice in the four-game series.

Game 2 of the series will be played Saturday before the series moves to Boston for Games 3 and 4 next week.

WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS

Nathan Horton left the ice with what appeared to be an upper-body injury and went down the tunnel during a Bruins’ power play in the first overtime and did not return to the game. With Horton out, Tyler Seguin took shifts in his place. Seguin had multiple bids to end the game while playing with David Krejci and Lucic.

— Though the Blackhawks were penalized for two separate too-many-men-on-the-ice infractions, there was actually a third that was missed. Chicago had six players on the ice for a full 12 seconds a little more than midway through the second overtime, but the infraction was not noticed.

— The OT chances for the B’s were plentiful. Seguin had a few, Zdeno Chara hit the post with a blast from the point on the power play in the second and Kaspars Daugavins had a golden chance in front halfway through the third overtime but was stopped on his backhand bid. He fell to the ice during the play and complained that he was tripped.

— Rask’s remarkable streak came to an end in Game 1, as the score dictated more of what people were actually expecting from the Penguins. Ultimately, Rask was actually fine, as you have to consider that the Blackhawks’ third goal bounced off Ference’s skate and in. Rask came came up big for the B’s early. In the first period, Bergeron blocked a shot from the point, and when Bryan Bickell got control of it in the high slot and wheeled around for a Grade-A chance stick-side, Rask came through with a low blocker save.

Torey Krug had his shakiest showing of the postseason, and Claude Julien obviously took notice as he limited the rookie’s ice time. That didn’t stop Krug from being out there and committing the turnover that led to Bolland’s goal. Julien benched him for the rest of regulation and played him very sparingly in overtime. He was in front on Shaw’s game-winner.

— Still think Corey Crawford isn’t legit? The Chicago goalie came up huge with less than four minutes to play on a pair of bids from Bergeron in front and then robbed Shawn Thornton in overtime.

— The Bruins took a too-many-ice penalty (and a rather stingy one on the refs’ part) in the second period, marking the third time in three games the B’s have been called for too many men. Fortunately for them, they were dealing with Chicago’s power play so it didn’t hurt them.

— That’s now 21 games without a point for Chris Kelly. He does other things that make him effective (notably his work on the penalty kill), but the Bruins would sure like to see more production out of their bottom six and he’s long overdue.

WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS

— One of the stories entering the series was that both teams had good penalty kills but stunk on the power play. Confirmed. The B’s killed off all three of their penalties (including a 5-on-3 in the second period), and haven’t allowed a power play goal since Game 5 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals against the Rangers. Dating back to their final penalty of that series, the Bruins have now killed off 19 straight penalties. They began the season by killing off 24 in a row.

— Both of Lucic’s goals came as a result of the B’s outbattling the Blackhawks. On the first goal, Krejci beat Niklas Hjalmarsson to a puck behind the net and threw a hit on him before sending the puck to Horton at the low circle, with Horton then feeding Lucic in front to set up the goal. On Lucic’s second goal, he outbattled Patrick Kane in the neutral zone, sending it up to Krejci, who fed it back to Lucic to set up his slap shot goal.

— The B’s managed to get away with playing the Andrew Ference-Johnny Boychuk pairing more than the Zdeno Chara-Dennis Seidenberg pairing in the first period and come out of it with a lead. Chara and Seidenberg played 7:30 and 7:27, respectively, while Ference and Boychuk played 9:00 and 8:13, respectively. Order was restored in the second period, but Ference still led the Bruins with 26:01 of ice time in regulation.

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