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Sunday, June 1, 2014
W2W4: Blackhawks vs. Kings (Game 7)

By Scott Powers

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Blackhawks and Los Angeles Kings face off Sunday in Game 7 of the Western Conference finals at the United Center, with the series tied 3-3. Here's what to watch for:

  • The Kings held a 3-1 series advantage, but the Blackhawks won Game 5 in double overtime in Chicago and won Game 6 in Los Angeles. The Blackhawks overcame third-period deficits in both games and became the fourth team in Stanley Cup playoffs history to win consecutive elimination games when trailing in the third period, according to Elias Sports.

  • Only one other team has overcome a 3-1 deficit in the conference finals. The New Jersey Devils did it against the Philadelphia Flyers in 2000. The Blackhawks could also become the first team to overcome a 3-1 series deficit in consecutive seasons. The Blackhawks did so against the Detroit Red Wings in the conference semifinals last season.

  • Both teams enter Game 7 with history on their side. The Blackhawks are 13-0 in Games 5-7 the last two seasons. The Kings are 6-0 in elimination games this season and advanced in the previous two rounds by winning Game 7 on the road.

  • The Kings are the third team in NHL history to play all 21 possible games through three rounds since all rounds went to best-of-seven in 1987.

  • Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane was held in check for the first four games, but he’s come alive in the last two. He had four assists in Game 5 and two goals, including the game-winner, and an assist in Game 6. He has seven points in the last two games and eight points in the series. He had a hat trick when the Blackhawks clinched the Western Conference finals in Game 5 last season against the Kings.

  • The Blackhawks have been better on the special teams in the past two games. After scoring just one power-play goal and allowing five in Games 2-5, the Blackhawks outscored the Kings 2-1 on special teams in the past two games. The Blackhawks are 7-2 in the playoffs this season and 14-2 in the last two seasons when they score a power-play goal.

  • Kings defenseman Drew Doughty has been impressive throughout the series. He’s had three multi-point games and has seven points in the series. He nearly led the Kings to a victory in Game 6 with a goal and a primary assist in the third period. He has 16 points in the playoffs, which matches his own Kings record for a defenseman.

  • Both goaltenders have been up and down throughout the series. Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford has allowed 21 goals and has stopped 160 of 181 shots for a .884 save percentage in the series. Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick has allowed 19 goals and has stopped 147 of 166 shots for a .886 save percentage.