Penalties (and officiating in general) were a huge point of emphasis after Game 2 and early in Game 3, so it’s strangely fitting that the St. Louis Blues took the contest after converting on a huge special teams opportunity.
Patrick Kane‘s high-stick left Alex Pietrangelo bleeding, so the Blues received a four-minute power play in the third period. Jaden Schwartz converted on a pretty passing play to make it 3-2, which stood as the final score as the Blues built a 2-1 series lead.
Boiling it down to that sequence doesn’t really do justice to a Game 3 that had more twists than a M. Night Shyamalan movie.
The first period could have been disastrous for the Blues after an opening sequence that included an iffy penalty that opened the door for a 1-0 Blackhawks lead and multiple infractions right out of the gate. Instead, the Blues fought through it and nailed their first man-advantage chance when Colton Parayko boomed home a shot to make it 1-1.
The middle frame could have been disastrous as well; the Blackhawks managed a ridiculous 24 shots on goal during a second period that was brimming with end-to-end action.
Both goalies were fantastic, however, and Chicago only entered the third period with a 2-1 lead.
Overall, the two teams combined for a dizzying 82 shots on goal (46 for Chicago, 36 for St. Louis). It felt that way, too, as it was arguably a classic game between a pair of bitter rivals.
The Blues showed remarkable resiliency to win, beating the Blackhawks in a way they haven’t lost very often:
These two teams keep trading big blows as if this was a prize fight. We’ll get to see how Chicago rolls with this latest punch when the series resumes with Game 4 on Tuesday.
And now, your “Moment of Zen.”