In yet another overtime game, Daniel Paille scored the overtime winner as the Boston Bruins evened their Stanley Cup Final series with the Chicago Blackhawks with a 2-1 victory.
We’ll have plenty of coverage in the coming days on the blog, but for now, here are Saturday’s Three Stars:
Third Star: Marian Hossa
Hossa, who was once again at his best self in terms of holding onto the puck in this contest despite the constant barrage of hits he sustained, also was a huge part of the early Blackhawks push in this game, and realistically could have put the game away early.
He ended up with seven shots on goal in the game, and also had a couple of takeaways on the defensive side of things. Factor in his excellent play on the penalty killing side of things for the Hawks, where he made the most out of his 1:02 of ice time, and it was the kind of all around game that the Hawks have come to expect out of their veteran winger.
Second Star: Michael Frolik
Speaking of players who excelled on the penalty killing side of things, Frolik is simply in a class all by himself.
He aggressively jumps passing lanes and he is capable of using his quick hands to start up the Blackhawks’ transition offense, but despite the aggressiveness required to execute this style of play, he never does it to the detriment of the team, and maintains his discipline.
When the Blackhawks acquired him via trade in February 2011, there was no way that anyone could have foreseen the kind of impact that he would have on the team in this crucial area.
First Star: Patrick Sharp
Sharp has been one of the Hawks’ biggest offensive contributors all postseason long, and along with Hossa he was unquestionably their best player on that side of the puck during Game 2.
Sharp attempted nine shots in the game, with seven of them finding their way on net, but none of them was more important than the one that he scored on in the first period, thanks to some tremendous net traffic on the part of his teammates, as well as Sharp’s own patience. The shot, which goaltender Tuukka Rask never saw, was the culmination of that early offensive push by the Hawks, which resulted in 19 shots on goal in the first period.