Chicago Blackhawks, Calgary Flames win, go through to final 8
Chicago’s Duncan Keith scored with 3:48 left to give the Blackhawks a 4-3 win against Nashville on Saturday to complete a 4-3 series victory and book a place in the last eight of the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs.
Calgary also progressed to the second round with a comeback victory over west Canada rival Vancouver to take the series 4-2, while the New York Islanders staved off elimination by beating Washington and sending their series to a decisive Game 7, and Detroit beat Tampa Bay to also move within one win of progressing.
Chicago’s Keith scored the winner when he beat a screened Nashville goaltender Pekka Rinne with a laser-like shot from the left point. The defenseman, who also had the winning goal in a 4-3 double-overtime victory in Game 1, contributed two assists.
Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Patrick Sharp also scored for Chicago, and Corey Crawford stopped 13 shots after replacing Scott Darling in the first period after the rookie goalie gave up three goals.
Chicago will face St. Louis or Minnesota in the Western Conference semifinals. Minnesota leads that series 3-2.
Calgary progressed with a 7-4 win against Vancouver, though the scoreline disguised the closeness of the contest, with the Flames only going ahead when Matt Stajan scored with 4:17 left.
Michael Ferland and Jiri Hudler each scored twice, and Sean Monahan and Johnny Gaudreau added goals for Calgary. Hudler’s powerplay goal tied the game 4-4 at 6:14 of the third period.
Luca Sbisa, Brandon McMillan, Jannik Hansen and Radim Vrbata scored for the Canucks, who had led 3-0 midway through the first period.
Calgary will play Anaheim in the second round.
New York’s Nikolay Kulemin scored the go-ahead goal with 9:27 left and the Islanders beat Washington 3-1 to set up a Game 7 decider.
Islanders captain John Tavares had a goal and assist, and Nick Leddy had two assists in what could still be the franchise’s final game at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Cal Clutterbuck then got the loud crowd on its feet by sealing the win with an empty-net goal with 53 seconds remaining.
John Carlson scored for the Capitals, who will host the deciding game Monday. The series winner advances to face the New York Rangers.
Detroit goalie Petr Mrazek stopped 28 shots to shut out Tampa Bay and help the Red Wings beat the Lightning 4-0 to claim a 3-2 advantage in the series.
Riley Sheahan, Drew Miller, Pavel Datsyuk and Danny DeKeyser scored for the Red Wings, who can close out the Eastern Conference matchup by winning Game 6 home Monday.
The shutout was the second of the series for the young Mrazek, who had no previous NHL playoff experience before being named
at Detroit’s starter over veteran Jimmy Howard. Mrazek also blanked the Lightning in Game 3 as well as having the only shutout against the league’s highest-scoring team during the regular season.
Detroit Red Wings’ Landon Ferraro, second from right, celebrates a Detroit goal on Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Ben Bishop #30 during the second period of Game 5 of an NHL hockey first-round playoff series in Tampa, Florida on Saturday, April 25.