On a night where the Boston Bruins were a little over a minute away from forcing a Game 7 in Chicago on Wednesday, the Chicago Blackhawks stormed back to score two goals in 17 seconds in the third period to win Lord Stanley at TD Garden.
The B’s had the right start on Monday night outplaying the Blackhawks for the first 20 minutes. They were outhitting them and outshooting them. They did everything they had to do. It could have been a lot worse than 1-0 after the first period, but Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford stopped the bleeding.
Crawford was not spectacular on the night by any means, but in the first period when the B’s were peppering him with shots, he made the saves he had to and did not let the one goal deficit get out of hand.
Crawford made 23 saves for the Stanley Cup Champion Blackhawks on the night.
“I still can’t believe that finish,” Crawford said. “Oh my God, we never quit.”
Crawford finished the post season with a 16-7 record and a 1.84 goals against average. He recorded one shutout and had a save percentage of .932.
Even though the Blackhawks were down 2-1 with a little over a minute to go, no one thought the game was over-including B’s fans.
“I never lost confidence,” Crawford said. “No one in our room ever did.”
Sure, it may have been easier giving the Player of the Game award to Jonathan Toews, the Captain, and Selke Award winner who chipped in with a goal and an assist in a game where he was iffy to play due to injury, but one cannot ignore Crawford hanging in tough against the Black and Gold’s huge first period surge and settling down throughout the entire game.
He may have glove side problems, but whenever the B’s had an opportunity to make it a two-goal game, it seemed Crawford was either in the right position or he got a stick or glove on their shot.
It is a tough pill to swallow for B’s fans as the Blackhawks skated around the TD Garden with the best trophy in sports, but the better team won in this series.
Corey Crawford had a long road to get to the NHL and all his hard work paid off tonight as he is now known as a champion for the rest of his life.
An honorable mention for my Player of the Game goes to Patrice Bergeron for his gutsy effort in Game 6 playing with a broken rib and torn cartilage in his side. He also suffered a separated shoulder in tonight’s game.