Podcast: Melrose likes Hawks' G7 chances
May, 28, 2013
Dave Reginek/NHLI/Getty ImagesThe combination of momentum and home-ice could have the Hawks celebrating Wednesday.Barry Melrose said he believes the Chicago Blackhawks will prevail in Game 7 of the Western Conference semifinals against the Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday at the United Center.
"I expect a real well-played game," Melrose said on "The Carmen & Jurko Show" on ESPN 1000. "I expect special teams to be a big factor, Chicago's power play is pretty hot right now.
"But I think it's going to come down to the stars of each team, the stars of Chicago against the stars of Detroit, who plays better, who are the heroes of the game. I think Chicago with this emotion and with this momentum playing Game 7 in Chicago has the advantage, that can all change with a big play by (Pavel Datsyuk or (Henrik Zetterberg, but Chicago has every opportunity now to finish this series at home and go onto the next series, so I think Chicago will win. I think Patrick Kane will have a big game and probably be the first star."
Melrose thinks the Wings could be fatigued from their first-round series against the Anaheim Ducks, which also went seven games.
"They have to be a little bit tired, because this is their second Game 7, second emotional, physical Game 7 on the road, so you have to think they're a little bit beat up," Melrose said. "But this is an experienced team with guys who have won Stanley Cups, they have a lot of playoff games in that dressing room. There won't be anything that surprises them, they'll be ready to play.
"But I really think Datsyuk and Zetterberg have to have better games. They have to be dominant players again and come out and be guys we saw earlier in the series. I think those two guys have to be the leaders for the Detroit Red Wings, and just being good, two-way players isn't going to be good enough in Game 7 in Chicago. I'd be very surprised if Datsyuk and Zetterberg don't have their best games of the series."