Blackhawks energized in return to Windy City

The young, speedy Blackhawks are back in Chicago buoyed by splitting the first two games of their Stanley Cup playoff series against the Vancouver Canucks.

Chicago Blackhawks' Jonathan Toews

VANCOUVER — The young, speedy Blackhawks are back in Chicago buoyed by splitting the first two games of their Stanley Cup playoff series against the Vancouver Canucks.

They’ve had quite a confidence-building road trip.

Chicago clinched their Western Conference quarter-final against the Flames with a 4-1 Game 6 win in Calgary on April 27.

Now they’re getting pucks past Vancouver all-star netminder Roberto Luongo, beating him eight times in the final four periods of a 5-3 loss Thursday and a 6-3 victory on Saturday.

When the conference semifinal resumes with Tuesday’s Game 3 (CBC, 6 p.m.), they want the post-season’s last Canadian team to know Wrigley Field is not the only friendly confines in the Windy City.

The Blackhawks are 3-0 in Stanley Cup play at the rowdy, noisy United Center.

“We’re pretty excited about the way things evolved on this trip but it’s been a special place for us to play all year,” said coach Joel Quenneville.

“The enthusiasm in the building when we get back on Tuesday is going to be great.”

Dave Bolland, the 22-year-old centre from Mimico, Ont., who tied Game 1 with his first playoff goal and added short-handed and empty-net goals on Saturday, said the 22,500-plus United Center fanatics will energize the Hawks.

“With our crowd there yelling and screaming, hopefully that helps us out,” he said of the building where Chicago was 24-9-8 in the regular season.

“We want to make sure we go into our barn with confidence and doing what we have to do.”

What they are doing is scoring.

The five goals Luongo surrendered Saturday matched the entire St. Louis total in Vancouver’s first-round sweep of the Blues.

Luongo said he didn’t expect to win every game against Chicago but the Canucks must play like they did in the 4-0 victory in the teams’ last regular-season meeting.

“Once we get to Chicago we know we can play the type of game that we want to play,” Luongo said.

They might have to do it without veteran defenceman Sami Salo who left the ice Saturday after three shifts and opening the scoring with his third playoff goal.

Salo was not on Sunday’s team flight to Chicago and remained in Vancouver to receive more treatment. There was no word on his status for Tuesday.

Willie Mitchell, Salo’s partner on the shutdown defensive pairing against top opposition lines, said before boarding that Salo’s blistering power-play point shots will also be missed.

“But we had that happen in St. Louis, where he was out (for Game 4) and we responded and we’ll do the same thing here.”

The fourth game of the best-of-seven Chicago series is Thursday before the teams return to Vancouver for Game 5 on Saturday.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Red Deer supports fiscal framework AUMA resolution

The City of Red Deer supported the City of Edmonton in its… Continue reading

Central zone down to 16 active COVID-19 cases

Alberta Health Services’ central zone is down to 16

Red Deer drum circle aims to ‘bring different cultures together’

Central Alberta Refugee Effort, Urban Aboriginal Voices Society hosted the event Friday

Students reassured pandemic’s academic impact will be taken into account

Some Grade 12 students concerned how pandemic will affect their post-secondary plans

Liberals vow wage-subsidy extension to 2021, revamp of EI system in throne speech

Canadian labour market was hammered by pandemic, when lockdowns in the spring led to a loss of 3 million jobs

A mind-boggling tale of idiocy

Some people have the IQ of a piece of second-hand furniture

Wilkinson aims to be B.C. premier after cabinet role, working as doctor and lawyer

The B.C. election is Wilkinson’s first as the Liberal party leader

First Nations police services look to throne speech pledge for higher, stable funding

‘I won’t be happy until I hear two words: royal assent’

No winning ticket for Friday night’s $50 million Lotto Max jackpot

Jackpot for the next draw will grow to approximately $55 million

Tiny airborne particles may pose a big coronavirus problem

NEW YORK — At a University of Maryland lab, people infected with… Continue reading

Scores arrested in protest against Belarus’ president

KYIV, Ukraine — Hundreds of women calling for the authoritarian president to… Continue reading

At UN, India vows to help produce virus vaccine for world

TANZANIA, Tanzania — Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi pledged to help the… Continue reading

Shattenkirk scores in overtime, Tampa Bay beats Dallas 5-4 in Stanley Cup final

Shattenkirk scores in overtime, Tampa Bay beats Dallas 5-4 in Stanley Cup final

Most Read