Let’s clear something up really quick, lest you get the wrong idea. The Hawks aren’t fated to win when I’m in charge of the recaps, it’s just that when Merrin is on the schedule, they always lose. Besides, 1-1 is nothing to the Hawks (and we all kind of like the Lightning anyway. Seriously though, is there anyone who doesn’t like them? They’re young, adorable, play good, fast hockey…do you hate puppies too? What kind of a monster are you?)
Blackhawks vs Lightning
Final Score: Hawks 3 – Bolts 4
Series: Tied 1-1
This game was everything I could’ve wanted out of a SCF matchup (except maybe the final score). It had speed. It had beautiful goals. It had controversy. It had a rookie goaltender saving the day!
The first period was as the Blackhawks promised: fast right out of the gate. While the Lightning basically ran over them in Game 1, this time things were much more evenly matched, with both Corey “It Wasn’t My Night” Crawford and Ben “It’s Even LESS My Night” Bishop being called into action early.
Cedric “Voted Most Likely To Be A Tri-Wizard Champion” Paquette snuck one through traffic to get the goal scoring started halfway through the first.
That was the only goal until the 2nd period, when the Hockey Gods smiled upon us and said “Let This Be a GAME!”. Andrew “We Think He’s Housetrained” Shaw evened things up and then two minutes later on the power play, Teuvo “No Team Should Be Allowed to Have Two Patrick Kanes” Teravainen roofs it to give the Blackhawks the first lead of the game.
It didn’t last long though, as the Triplets, in danger of losing their narrative, took the game into their own hands with Nikita “Kucherov? It’s Kucher-ON” Kucherov getting a stick on this bomb of a shot from the point to deflect it past Crawford.
And because that wasn’t enough, a couple minutes later, Tyler “Don’t You….Forget About Me” Johnson flips one on goal from a tight angle, and it trickles past Crawford, giving the Bolts the lead going into the 3rd.
Literally no one thought the game was done, however, and we were all proven correct, with Brent Seabrook’s shot from the point tying the game up at three-all. This was, however, a controversial goal, as Marian Hossa should’ve been called for Goalie Interference, but even after review, the goal stood.
Listen, I actually agree. That IS goalie interference. But with the way the game is being called right now, the only thing that the refs are willing to say is GI is when a player lands ON TOP of a goalie (whether on purpose or because he was pushed there – see: Versteeg in Game 1), so I’m not surprised this wasn’t called.
This is when things start to get weird for the Lightning. Bishop has a quick convo with his Dmen, plays a few more minutes, then after Patrick “Most Marketable Face in the NHL” Sharp takes a penalty, skates off and is replaced by Andrei “Remember Me From Such Games As: My First Ever NHL Shutout Against Your Team” Vasilevskiy for about three minutes.
During those three minutes, though, Jason “Just Me & My Beard” Garrison fires one on net that deflects off of Andrew “I Swear I Didn’t Walk Under A Ladder Today” Desjardins, giving Tampa the lead. Bishop came back in, but unless someone else scored, Vasilevskiy would’ve gotten the win. Hockey be crazy, man.
Unfortunately, Bishop still isn’t feeling ok, and goes back out, and Vasilevskiy finishes the last 6:47 of the game in his stead, ruining what could’ve been a hilarious factoid by actually making saves and earning the win. Cue sad trombone noise. Bishop’s status is still unclear – we don’t know if it’s injury, illness, or what his timeline looks like. This could be a huge blow for the Lightning, especially as they head to Chicago on Monday.
What We Learned: If there’s an opportunity to make a poop joke, hockey twitter will grab it and run. Or have the runs, as the case may be.