VANCOUVER – Duncan Keith and Marian Hossa scored two goals each as the Chicago Blackhawks embarrassed the Vancouver Canucks 5-0 Thursday night to stave off elimination a second time in their Western Conference quarter-final series.
Patrick Kane also scored for Chicago, who trail 3-2 in the series but will ride a freight train of momentum home for Game 6 Sunday night. Keith and Patrick Sharp had two assists each.
Rookie goaltender Corey Crawford made 36 stops for his first playoff shutout. He also got in on the scoring, earning his second assist of the series on the opening goal.
The game was over in the first period. Hossa, on a power play, and Keith scored goals 24 seconds apart. Kane made it 3-0 on another power play with just over 12 minutes gone.
The Canucks looked to be in the driver’s seat when they took a 3-0 lead in the best-of-seven series. But the defending Stanley Cup champions refused to quit.
The Hawks won Game 4 in Chicago 7-2 and have outscored Vancouver 12-2 the last two matches.
“I think we are just trying to build on it one game at a time,” said Keith. “We got confidence last game. We just keep talking about one game at a time and keep going. We are focused and we believe.”
“We’re back in it now. But we know there’s a lot of hockey and long tough road to go here, but we believe in this locker room.”
There were boos among the sellout crowd of 18,860 at Rogers Arena as the Canucks were routed on home ice, bringing back memories of past playoffs lost.
Chicago eliminated the Canucks from the second round of the playoffs the last two seasons.
For the consecutive game Canuck goaltender Roberto Luongo was chased from his net. He has allowed 10 goals on the last 40 shots.
The Blackhawks have been down 3-0 in the playoffs 18 times but this is the first time they have extended a series to a sixth game.
A Game 7, if necessary, will be Tuesday in Vancouver.
“It was another game we are not proud of and we’re not happy with,” said Vancouver defenceman Kevin Bieksa. “We had a bad first period. They capitalized on some mistakes. We move forward and put this one behind us.”
The Blackhawks showed early they wanted the game more. The Hawks drove the net and created traffic in front of Luongo.
Late in the first period defenceman Brian Campbell caught Daniel Sedin with a check that left the Canuck forward sprawled on the ice.
In the second period Canuck defenceman Dan Hamhuis rammed Chicago’s Dave Bolland into the boards. Bolland, who missed 17 games with a concussion, was so angry with the hit he broke his stick on the boards at the Chicago bench, earning a unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.
Hossa opened the scoring at 5:54 of the first. The big Slovak skated up the middle of the ice, easily moved around a defenceman, and fired a hard shot over Luongo’s glove for his first goal of the series.
The public address announcer was still announcing that goal when Keith collected a rebound and fired a shot from the blue-line that beat Luongo. That forced coach Alain Vigneault to call a timeout to settle his team down.
Kane made it 3-0 before the period ended, deflecting a Keith shot past Luongo.
One of Crawford’s best saves came in the first period when he blocked an Alex Burrows shot.
Hossa scored on a breakaway at 1:26 of the second period. That ended Luongo’s night after allowing four goals on 12 shots. He was replaced by Cory Schneider.
Keith extended the lead to 5-0 at 4:47 of the second with a long shot that a screened Schneider couldn’t see.
Vancouver rolled into the playoffs after the best season in franchise history. The Canucks won the Presidents’ Trophy for the top record in the NHL.
The Blackhawks were inconsistent all year and needed a loss by the Dallas Stars on the last day of the season to back into the eighth and final playoff spot in the West.
Vancouver defenceman Keith Ballard and forward Victor Oreskevich did not dress for the game. They were replaced by defenceman Aaron Rome and forward Cody Hodgson.
Chicago defenceman Brent Seabrook missed his second consecutive match after suffering a concussion in a hit by Raffi Torres in Game 3.
Notes: Ryan Kesler and Burrows combined for 54 goals during the regular season. They have none in the playoffs. …Luongo allowed six goals only once during the regular season, a 6-2 loss to Minnesota on Oct. 19. …Vancouver has led playoff series 3-0 twice before, 1982 against Calgary and 2009 against St. Louis. The Canucks won both series.