- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 14, 2014

ST. PAUL, Minn. — The Chicago Blackhawks were chasing for much of the game, and the Minnesota Wild just kept generating chance after chance to score.

Once overtime arrived, though, all Patrick Kane needed was one friendly bounce to finish off another opponent.

Kane scored on a backhand at 9:42 of the extra period to lift the Blackhawks to a 2-1 victory over the Wild in Game 6 to clinch their second-round Western Conference series on Tuesday night, the fourth playoff overtime winner of his career.


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“He’s a special player, and guys have that instinct, have that knack of finding pucks, wanting to be out there, wanting to score,” Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said.

Kris Versteeg scored 1:58 into the game and Corey Crawford came up with tough save after tough save among his 34 stops for the Blackhawks, who advanced to the Western Conference finals to meet either Anaheim or Los Angeles. The Ducks lead the other semifinal series 3-2, with the Kings hosting Game 6 on Wednesday night.

Since 2009, the first postseason appearance for Kane and co-star Jonathan Toews, the Blackhawks are 14-0 in Games 5 and 6 of playoff series that were tied after Game 4. They’re also 12-2 in games with a chance to win a series, including 6-1 on the road.

“We probably didn’t play our best tonight, but just finding a way to win is something this team has done for many years now,” Kane said.

Erik Haula scored his fourth goal of the playoffs and Ilya Bryzgalov stopped 25 shots for the Wild.

Minnesota pushed a frenetic pace for much of the night but paid for all those missed prime opportunities when a simple dump-in behind the net by Brent Seabrook took a strange bounce off the glass back toward the slot.

The puck slid past Peter Regin as he was tied up with a defenseman.

Kane snagged it, deked once and flipped it into top of the net. He said he wasn’t sure right away if the puck was in.

But he soon found out.

“It seems like it was not our luck tonight,” said Bryzgalov, who nearly matched Crawford save for save. “We hit some posts in the third period and they got like the first goal after some crazy two bounces.”

The Wild kept up the pressure on Crawford that they created in the middle of the game, but whether it was the goalie’s pads, blocker or a crossbar in the way, the pucks didn’t go in.

“We really believe that we were capable of doing more than just winning this game,” a dejected Wild coach Mike Yeo said, adding: “Our guys did everything that we asked and they laid it on the line, and that’s what hurts.”

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