The Detroit Red Wings knew they had a tall task ahead of them in stopping the Chicago Blackhawks, but after a nasty first game in their series the Red Wings blasted the Blackhawks inside the United Center to even the series 1-1. Despite Chicago having hot sticks, Red Wings netminder Justin Howard lived up to the task of stopping the Blackhawks, allowing just a single goal while getting much needed run support from his offense.
It was the exact opposite of how the Blackhawks were used to playing games this year, as Patrick Kane got Chicago on the board with an early first period goal but netminder Corey Crawford then allowed four unanswered goals which ultimately ended up being the final score. Henrik Zetterberg helped lead the way for the Red Wings despite not scoring a single goal. However the Wings captain managed four shots on goal and assisted on two that ended up getting past Crawford.
While the win is one that Detroit should be proud of, it’s not one to totally hang their hats on at the moment. The series is tied 1-1 heading back to Joe Louis Arena for Game 3, but the Blackhawks aren’t a team that rolls over and gives up after they’ve been punched in the teeth. Their toothy grin is their swagger and as we saw in Game 1 against the Minnesota Wild, if knocked down the Blackhawks get back up but do so with a vengeance.
If the Red Wings can thwart a Game 3 surge by the Blackhawks, then we can start talking about a potential upset. But Detroit hasn’t seen Chicago at their best and that usually occurs after they’ve been embarrassed.
Detroit embarrassed Chicago on Saturday but this series is far from over, rather it just got a whole lot more interesting.