BOSTON (AP) - The Chicago Blackhawks shifted from flat to frenzied, then tied the Stanley Cup finals with a hard-fought overtime win over the Boston Bruins in a free-flowing Game 4.
Brent Seabrook’s goal 9:51 into OT ended a wild Wednesday night of offense and short-lived leads, sending the Blackhawks back home to Chicago for Game 5 on Saturday all even instead of trailing 3-1.
It was a decided turnaround for Chicago after a listless performance Monday in a 2-0 loss that put the Bruins up 2-1 in the series.
“We definitely worked really hard at creating the chances that we did,” said Chicago captain Jonathan Toews, who had gone 10 games without a goal before he scored early in the second to put Chicago up 2-1. “The chances that we got, the goals that we scored, weren’t turnover plays by them or just lucky bounces by us. They were goals that we were moving the puck around, we shot it, we got rebounds, we recovered the puck, we kept it moving around and finally scored a goal.”
In short, whatever the Blackhawks were lacking in Game 3 was plentiful Wednesday.
The Blackhawks had six shots on goalie Tuukka Rask before the Bruins had any. Chicago also outhit the Bruins early and pounced on loose pucks when Rask left himself vulnerable by failing to control rebounds.
“It’s exciting. Everybody worked so hard tonight. Everybody’s worked so hard through the playoffs,” Seabrook said. “We’re all contributing. It doesn’t matter if I score or anybody else scores, it’s nice to get the win and move on to the next day.”
The Blackhawks outshot the Bruins 47-33 and scored a power-play goal for the first time in the series, ending an 0-for-29 drought that started in the Western Conference finals against Los Angeles.
Chicago had just five goals in the series entering Game 4, and the teams had combined for just 12 before striking for 11 on Wednesday.
Patrick Kane had a goal and an assist, and Corey Crawford finished with 28 saves. Crawford certainly has played better, but he was backed by enough offense this time to overcome his mistakes.
All five of Boston’s goals beat Crawford to the glove side, which the Bruins tested one final time in OT on a snap shot by Rich Peverley.
Peverley had scored against Crawford with a wrist shot in the first period to tie it 1-1.
Crawford juggled the puck slightly, but held on to it and forced a faceoff 9:32 into overtime.
“Corey has been great for us all year, all playoffs. He just moves forward,” coach Joel Quenneville said. “Commend him. We got the win. You know, he’ll be fine.”