Blackhawks awaken for victory
Through two periods the Blackhawks were stifled by the Lightning, failing to score on three power plays and able to muster only 13 shots. Trailing 1-0 since less than five minutes into the game, the Blackhawks finally awoke to score twice in the third period within 1:58 to grab the series opener, 2-1.
Some great patience by the Blackhawks tireless defenceman Duncan Keith helped keep the puck in the Lightning's end of the ice, setting the stage for a screened shot by Teuvo Teravainen that found the back of the net behind Ben Bishop, knotting the game at 1-1.
With the Amalie Arena crowd still buzzing after the tying goal, the Blackhawks took the lead less than two minutes later when Antoine Vermette put one past Bishop for his third goal of the post-season, and second game-winner.
Crawford is clutch
Corey Crawford wasn't overly busy in the Blackhawks' goal but came up with some crucial saves while Chicago was down a goal. Late in the second period he stopped Steven Stamkos twice, first on a hard shot when Stamkos came down the wing. Then, on a close-in chance.
Rope-A- Dope Fails
After outshooting the Blackhawks 18-13 through the first two periods, the Lightning seemed intent on lulling Chicago to sleep with a Rope-A-Dope approach, smothering the Blackhawks offence but hardly venturing outside their own zone.
They went nearly 13 minutes into the third period before finally registering a shot on a breakaway by Ryan Callahan that Crawford turned away.
It was right after that that the Blackhawks responded with the Teravainen and Vermette goals that decided Game 1.
Killorn magic not enough
Alex Killorn has enjoyed a great playoff season for the Lightning, now with eight goals and 17 points in 21 post-season games. When he scored early in the first period for the Lightning it seemed a positive sign since Tampa Bay was 9-0 when scoring first in the playoffs. The third-year NHLer became the first graduate of Harvard University to score a goal in a Stanley Cup final round when he re-directed a floating shot with a deft backhander to beat Corey Crawford.
Here's a second look.
On this night, one Lightning goal would not be enough.