After grabbing a two games to none lead on Sunday night, the Hawks and Kings had another quick turn-around for their third game in four days. Being down two games, Game 3 would be a huge game for the Kings and they played like it.
Returning home was crucial for the Kings as they were ignited by the Staples Center crowd. Despite still being without Mike Richards, the Kings came out fast and furious. They did exactly what they needed to do by grabbing the first goal of the game. Slava Voynov set up Justin Williams, who was able to beat Corey Crawford and give the Kings an early 1-0 lead.
The Kings stepped up their defense after allowing four goals on Sunday night and limited the Hawks to just 10 shots in the first two periods. While Chicago struggled to get quality chances, the Kings kept getting brakes. Voynov found a lose puck on the right side of the Hawks zone. Crawford was in position to make the save but Voynov’s stick broke and the puck changed paths and slipped into the net.
It appeared that the Hawks would enter the third period with a two goal deficit until Bryan Bickell got the Hawks on the board late in the second. With under a minute left, Bickell beat Jonathan Quick on a sweet wrap around.
Down just one but with momentum on their side, the Hawks had a flurry of chances in the third but just couldn’t get anything to. Bickell had another great chance but Quick made a spectacular save the save the game for the Kings. With 33 seconds left, the Kings iced the puck but the linesman ruled no icing. The call caught the Hawks by surprise and led to an empty net goal that sealed the game.
Despite being out played for the first two periods, it was a positive sign that they still had a chance to take the game. Game 4 will be a big turning point in the series as the series can return to Chicago at 3-1 or 2-2.