Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Dustin Byfuglien notched the game-winning goal with 7:36 left in the first overtime, as Chicago topped San Jose, 3-2, in Game 3 of this Western Conference final at United Center.
Chicago defenseman Brian Campbell corralled a loose puck along the blue line at the right point and dumped the disc around the boards. Dave Bolland collected it behind the San Jose net and fed in front, where Byfuglien one- timed it home.
Bolland added a third-period score, and Patrick Sharp also tallied for the Blackhawks, who assumed a commanding three-games-to-none series edge and can advance to the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time since 1992 with a win in Game 4 at home on Sunday afternoon.
Antti Niemi was strong for the win, turning aside 44-of-46 shots.
Patrick Marleau registered both goals, and Dan Boyle assisted on both for the Sharks, who have a ton of work ahead of them if they are to copy the Philadelphia Flyers' feat of recovering from an 0-3 series deficit in the previous round against Boston.
Evgeni Nabokov surrendered three goals on 38 shots in defeat.
San Jose was awarded the game's first power play a little over a minute into the game and almost cashed in when Joe Pavelski guided a Marleau rebound into the net with his skate. However, a review determined that the goal resulted from a kicking motion.
The Sharks had a 5-on-3 for almost 90 seconds early in the second period and converted just before the first penalty expired when Marleau pumped in a shot off a dish from Pavelski at 3:58.
Sharp countered at 6:59, burying a slick pass from Jonathan Toews on a Chicago power play.
Bolland was whistled for tripping with 9:25 to play in the third period, but the Sharks could not break the tie.
On his first full shift after the penalty, Bolland took a carom of a blocked shot from Toews, raced in alone and stuck a forehander past Nabokov for a 2-1 Hawks lead with 6:55 left in regulation.
However, Marleau was in the right place at the left side of the crease with 4:23 to play to shove home the rebound of a Dany Heatley shot for a 2-2 game.
Toews recorded a pair of assists, setting a new franchise record for consecutive games with a point in one postseason with 12. Hall-of-Famer Stan Mikita went 11 in a row back in 1962...Marleau has scored San Jose's last four goals...The Blackhawks improved to 4-3 at home in the 2010 postseason, and the Sharks fell to 3-3 on the road...Chicago improved to 2-0 in overtime games during these playoffs, and San Jose fell to 3-2.