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Monday, March 28, 2011
Rapid Reaction: Hawks 3, Wings 2 (OT)

By Jesse Rogers

DETROIT -- A quick look at the Chicago Blackhawks' 3-2 overtime win over the Detroit Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena.

How it happened: The Hawks blew another third-period lead but won with a overtime power-play goal by Marian Hossa. Patrick Kane created the man-advantage chance with a hard working final shift in regulation. A wide-open style played into the Hawks’ hands as they took advantage putting 41 shots on Red Wings backup Joey MacDonald. The Wings had their chances as well, but either Corey Crawford or some smart and fortunate plays by the Hawks defense kept them to just two goals. Duncan Keith broke up a 3-on-1 in the second period while Niklas Hjalmarsson got enough puck -- at least in the referees’ opinion -- diving to stop a Tomas Holmstrom breakaway. Jonathan Toews scored in the first period on a rebound while Brent Seabrook also tallied on a power play during a penalty-filled opening 20 minutes.

What it means: It’s a huge win to start the final two weeks of the season and opens a three-point lead on ninth-place Calgary and four points on 10th-place Dallas. The Hawks played just enough defense to get the victory. Crawford and MacDonald were good, and fortunate in keeping the score lower than it could have been. Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville line changes produced more offensive punch than in recent games.

Bertuzzi’s hit: There will be some debate whether Todd Bertuzzi deserves further punishment after getting kicked out of the game for elbowing Ryan Johnson in the head in the first period. The hit wasn’t as bad as Pavel Kubina's blow on Dave Bolland but Bertuzzi has a history, so expect a one- or two-game suspension at most. A fine could be the sole punishment as well.

What’s next: The Hawks head right to Boston after the game for a Tuesday night matchup with the Bruins. It’s the lone game between the teams this year. The Hawks are 26-4-5 over the last two seasons in the second game of back-to-back contests, including 11-3-2 this year.