This week’s Chicago Blackhawks back in the day revisits the 2015 Western Conference Final against the Anaheim Ducks. A back and forth series that featured several games with multiple overtimes.
The Blackhawks would prevail. Heroes would emerge. A Stanley Cup would wait and be won a series later. The momentum shifted back and forth throughout the seven games and several times, even in
Here’s a recap of how the West was won in 2015 by Chicago.
Game 1: Chicago Falls 4-1
It wasn’t Chicago’s best look and a Brad Richards goal late in the second period closed the deficit to one goal. But Anaheim pulled away in the third and sealed it with an empty netter to win by a 4-1 margin.
It would be a “boring” game compared to the next one.
Game 2: Blackhawks win 3-2 in Triple Overtime
It was quite the game. The Blackhawks jumped out to a 2-0 lead but the Ducks pulled even late into the second period on a Corey Perry (remember him?) goal. Then. Nothing.
Corey Crawford emerged as the hero, making 60 saves and while Marcus Kruger buried the winner in the third overtime. The fun fact? It was getting dangerously close to going to a fourth as Kruger’s goal came at the 16:12 mark of the third OT. Brent Seabrook threw it on net, it made it through a crowd, and Kruger got a piece of it before batting it past Freddie Andersen. It was a much needed win on the road and gave Chicago momentum going into Game 3.
Or so they thought.
Game 3: Blackhawks Fall 2-1 in the Game and Series
Both teams looked tired, and played a tight defensive game. Patrick Kane scored Chicago’s only goal with under a minute left in the first period. Anaheim would pot the winner in with 55 seconds left in the second period.
Game 4: Blackhawks Win 5-4 in Second Overtime
The Blackhawks did it again in two overtimes, but it didn’t come easy. In fact, they were an eyelash away from going down 3-1 in the series after squandering a two-goal lead. It was Kane to the rescue on the power play three minutes after once Anaheim went up by a goal.
Antoine Vermette would win it in double overtime after great positioning gave him a point blank chance. The first shot was saved but Anderssen coughed up the rebound, and Vermette deposited that one into the net. It was a close call but Chicago evened the series.
Game 5: Ducks Return the Favor, Win 5-4 in Overtime
It wasn’t so much that Chicago lost but more for how they came back. Jonathan Toews willed the Blackhawks back in the third period, scoring a pair of goals under 90 seconds. The second came with just 38 seconds remaining, thwarting an Anaheim victory that looked assured only two minutes earlier. The Ducks would take it quickly in overtime, but Toews cemented his legacy as a clutch player with the performance.
Game 6: Blackhawks, Shaw Fight Off Elimination
Chicago jumped out to a 3-0 lead before the Ducks chipped away to pull it within a goal. Andrew Shaw would get the insurance goal and then finished it off with an empty netter keeping the Blackhawks in the series and setting up Game 7 in Anaheim.
Game 7: Blackhawks Prevail With 5-3 Win, Take Series
It was only fitting that Toews would not only score the first two goals, but ultimately be the one to put the dagger in the Ducks once and for all. After his second goal of the period and the game, Brandon Saad and Marian Hossa would follow with a goal each in the second period. The Ducks followed the script of the series, desperately clawing their way back but this time, the four-goal deficit was too much to overcome.
Brent Seabrook’s powerplay marker completely sealed it off, and despite one final tally from Anaheim late in the third, the Campbell Conference Trophy was Chicago’s again.
Without question, the series against Anaheim was thrilling and one of the most memorable outside of the three Stanley Cup Final series. Several times the Blackhawks looked to be in trouble. Several times more they found a way to not only escape but skate away with a victory.