It was Hockey Fights Cancer Night in Carolina, but that didn’t stop the Blackhawks from fighting the Canes for the win until the very end.
Patrick Sharp scored his 200th career goal to open the scoring at 8:56 into the first, putting the reigning cup champs in the lead over the Hurricanes. The last second of a holding penalty to Eric Staal allowed for the Blackhawks to add to their score. The 2-0 lead was from Marion Hossa’s second goal of the season. Hossa, who had been plagued by back pains all summer, came back strong to start the season. He played in both of the team’s opening games, giving a strong performance.
At 17:56 of the second it looked like the Hawks were going to raise the score by one, but Ward said no, sprawling himself out to deflect the puck with the help of defenseman, Jay Harrison. Again, at 1:34, Ward was forced to say no to the Hawks once more, much to the dismay of Brent Seabrook, who took the whistle to have a few words with the goalie. In the final minute of the period Nathan Gerbe went rushing up the ice and took a shot at Corey Crawford, but was unable to score. It left the Hawks with the same 2-0 lead as it was at the top of the second.
Finally in the third, Alex ‘Sasha’ Semin was able to put the Canes on the board, cutting the Hawks lead in half. Jeff Skinner and Radek Dvorak kept trying to pick up the garbage left around the Chicago net, but it was Ron Hainsey, who scored his first goal as a Hurricane, to finally clean up, evening up the score and eventually sending the game into overtime.
In the first minute of overtime, both teams had opportune scoring chances. Nathan Gerbe and Patrick Kane, each sent one into the pads of the goalies, who blocked them to keep the overtime going. Semin and Ryan Murphy both tried to shoot one past Crawford, but again the goalie stood tall and overtime continued with a line change. The Canes were on fire and Semin and Ryan Murphy played ‘hot puck’ passing it back and forth, still unable to score, even on the Blackhawks delayed penalty. Even on the powerplay Murphy and Semin continued their pass pucking antics, this time with the help of Jeff Skinner and Eric Staal. With ten seconds left shots were fired at Crawford left and right, but Staal and Gerbe, but the goalie blocked all of them, and Caniacs and Hawks fans in the building were treated to a shootout game.
Fans in PNC Arena were on their feet as Con Smyth trophy winner Patrick Kane started off the rounds. Ward shut him down with a glove save. Next was Nathan Gerbe for the Canes, but was denied by Crawford.
Round two started off with Captain Toews, but his shot was blocked and Sasha Semin was up. The Russian lost control of the puck and score stayed even going into the third round.
The man who started off the scoring, Patrick Sharpe, was up next, and once again found the back of the net. Blackhawks fans in the building were ecstatic, hoping that the Jeff Skinner would go scoreless. That is exactly what happened, to the dismay of Skinner and Canes fans, the Hawks won the game 3-2.