For the first time in 16 games dating back to March 23 the Los Angeles Kings did not skate away with a ‘W’ from the Staples Center.
In a spirited game with the resurgence of two Chicago Blackhawks‘ star players that were held at bay by the Kings’ defense for the first three games; the Blackhawks came away with a 3-2 victory on Thursday night in Game 4 of the Western Conference Final.
Forward Marian Hossa scored the game-winner just 70 seconds into the third period give the Hawks their second rally from an one-goal deficit. Patrick Kane made his presence felt with a second period goal and Bryan Bickell continued his prowess on the score sheet scoring his 8th goal in the 2013 Playoffs.
A Robyn Regehr interference penalty carried into the third period and was successfully killed off by the Kings before Hossa netted the game-winner. Michal Handzus and Hossa jumped on a two-on-one breakaway on a poor Kings’ line change and Handzus feed Hossa a one-timer to light the lamp.
The Kings got on the board first with a Slava Voynov slapshot. The play began with a Kings’ pass deep into the Hawks’ zone before Kyle Clifford navigated the puck from behind the net to a wide open Voynov at the blueline. With traffic in front of Hawks’ goaltender Corey Crawford, Voynov released a slapshot passed Crawford’s stick side.
Hawks’ winger Bickell evened the score at the 13:16 mark. Michael Frolik skated into the neutral zone and dumped off a backhand pass to Bickell before he sent a wrister passed the 2012 Conn Symthe award winner, Jonathan Quick.
Only two minutes into the second frame the Kings tallied the go-ahead goal. Jeff Carter entered the Hawks’ zone battling Nick Leddy putting a shot on net. His shot would rebound of Crawford and Dustin Penner would fight off Hawks’ captain Jonathan Toews to put the Kings ahead.
Kane scored his first goal of the series with 1:39 remaining in the second frame to tie the game at 2-2. Niklas Hjalmarsson took a shot from the top of the blueline and a deflection from Bickell looked to have scored the goal passed Quick before Kane dove across to tap it in.
Game 5 is Saturday (7 p.m. CT, NBC) at the United Center when the Blachawks will look to clinch a berth to the Stanley Cup final.
Topics: 2013 NHL Playoffs, Bryan Bickell, Chicago Blackhawks, Dustin Penner, Jeff Carter, Jonathan Quick, Jonathan Toews, Kyle Clifford, Los Angeles Kings, Marian Hossa, Michael Frolik, Michal Handzus, Nick Leddy, Niklas Hjalmarsson, Robyn Regehr, Slava Voynov