Blackhawks Keep Playoff Dreams Alive With 3-2 OT Win Over Red Wings

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Corey Crawford Makes 33 Saves In Win

The Blackhawks helped keep their playoff hopes alive as they took the first of three end of season meetings with the Detroit Red Wings on Monday evening on the road. The win will help the Hawks gain a bit of space over the ninth place Calgary and tenth place Dallas. Anaheim, one point ahead in seventh place, had a late game against Colorado.

Marian Hossa scored the game winning goal against his former team less than a minute into overtime on a Hawks power play. The Hawks’ remarkable March run has turned a season that started with four down months into a likely return to the playoffs. Both of the other goals for the good guys were scored in the first period, a lead that held up until the beginning of the third.

Early in the game, Ryan Johnson was elbowed in the head by Detroit’s Todd Bertuzzi, a hit that earned a five minute penalty. Johnson was checked for a concussion but cleared to play later in the game.

The Hawks continue their road swing with a 6:30 P.M. game tomorrow night at the Boston Bruins.

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Chicago Blackhawks Vs. Detroit Red Wings: Crunch Time

It's really simple, actually -- the Blackhawks just have to keep winning, and they've been having trouble doing that lately, dropping a key game Saturday to the Ducks. That allowed Anaheim to leapfrog the Blackhawks into seventh place in the Western Conference, dropping the Hawks to eighth and putting them in danger of falling out of the playoffs entirely. They stand only one point ahead of the Flames and two ahead of the Stars.

The good news is that the Hawks have played the fewest games of anyone they're in contention with -- 74 -- except for the Stars, who also have 74 games played. Thus, the Hawks can pick up points that their competitors for playoff spots don't have available to them.

The bad news is that the Hawks have to play their archrivals in the Central Division, the Red Wings, three times in the final eight games, twice in Detroit, beginning with tonight's contest. The good news about that is that Detroit has actually been a better road team than a home team so far this year. Maybe that'll work to the Hawks' advantage. In any case, they really can't afford to lose any of their remaining games, lest their conference rivals catch up.

Tonight's game will be on Versus, beginning at 6:30 p.m. CDT.

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