After a couple of restful days off, and a Friday night without any playoff action, the Chicago Blackhawks and Los Angeles Kings get back to it to make everything right with the world for Game 3 in California.
The ‘Hawks and Kings may be lacking the ancillary drama that the Canadiens and Rangers have, but we’re looking at a far more interesting series with things knotted up after two games. We’ve seen the best out of both teams and perhaps just the worst out of Chicago in Game 2.
Game 3: Los Angeles Kings vs. Chicago Blackhawks [Series tied 1-1] (8:00 p.m. ET — NBC)
If the Blackhawks needed time to get over being thumped at home in Game 2, they got plenty of that. After allowing six unanswered goals, Corey Crawford’s job will be to find a way to rebound on the road in what should be a hostile atmosphere at Staples Center.
Crawford and Chicago had perhaps their worst effort of the playoffs in the third period of Game 2 and the Kings led by Anze Kopitar and Jeff Carter would like to keep the good times rolling for themselves. Carter’s Game 2 hat trick and Kopitar’s playoff-leading 20 points have kept L.A. moving along and with added offense from the top pairing of Drew Doughty and Jake Muzzin, the Kings are looking dangerous.
For Chicago to bounce back they’ll need better from Crawford but also more offense out of Patrick Sharp. He hasn’t had a point in three straight games and has just six points in the postseason. He was Chicago’s leading scorer in the regular season and they could stand to see him break out now.