After talking about the Washington Capitals’ desire to not dwell on their past, it seems appropriate to shine a light on their polar opposite: the Chicago Blackhawks.
Unlike Washington, which is preparing for its third attempt to close out its first round series against Philadelphia, Chicago is battling for its playoff lives. If not for a double-overtime goal by Patrick Kane on Thursday, the St. Louis Blues might have won Game 5 of that series and advanced to the second round.
As it is, the Blackhawks still have an uphill battle ahead of them going into Game 6, but they can look to their past as a source of strength. Beyond the obvious three Stanley Cup championships in the past six years, Chicago is also 8-1 in elimination games over the last four years and 14-1 in Game 6s since 2009.
“Our experience comes in huge in those situations,” Jonathan Toews said, per the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “You want to go out there and throw everything you’ve got at ‘em, but sometimes you’ve just got to relax and stay calm and do your job.”
Experience alone doesn’t buy playoff victories, as the Los Angeles Kings can attest, but it’s certainly one of the weapons in the Blackhawks’ arsenal. The Blues are a formidable team though. They were hard to beat on Thursday. It will be even more challenging to defeat them another two times in a row to advance.