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Bolland caps comeback as Blackhawks edge Maple Leafs

TORONTO (Ticker) -- The Chicago Blackhawks did not let a pregame

ceremony or a slow start put a damper on their annual "Circus


Dave Bolland scored 48 seconds into overtime as the Blackhawks

rallied for a 5-4 triumph over the Toronto Maple Leafs on


Patrick Sharp netted a pair of goals before Patrick Kane and Ben

Eager tallied in the third period for Chicago, which allowed the

first three goals of the game and trailed by two after 40


Bolland added an assist while defensemen Duncan Keith and Brian

Campbell notched two apiece for the Blackhawks, who improved to

3-0-0 on their six-game road trip made necessary due to the

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus' occupation of the

United Center.

"We're trying to not look too far ahead," Chicago captain

Jonathan Toews said. "We went down a few goals and we took it

and rallied back. On this trip, we're definitely getting the

bounces around the net. We just need to start off better next


"We haven't been our best in the last few games, and we've

weathered a few storms," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said.

"It's been a tough road trip, and we've had some emotional wins

like tonight. We're happy with the win, it shows what this team

is capable of."

Matt Stajan and Alexei Ponikarovsky each recorded a goal and an

assist while blue-liner Pavel Kubina and Dominic Moore also

scored for the Maple Leafs, who honored former left wing Wendel

Clark's No. 17 during a pregame ceremony.

Vesa Toskala stopped 31 shots for Toronto, which has lost three

in a row and fell to 2-5-2 in its last nine.

"We got a 3-0 lead, got carried away with ourselves and tried to

make a lot of long bomb passes that got picked off," Maple Leafs

coach Ron Wilson said. "We were picking them apart with a lot

of short passes, and then we got away from what we were doing

and they took it to us.

"When you lose a game, it's always going to be something. We

had a good start, we were focused. The first half of the game,

we dominated them. Then we got a too-many-men-on-the-ice

penalty and it was all downhill from there. We got sloppy and

we got beat."

The atmosphere at Air Canada Centre resembled a circus early for

the Blackhawks as Kubina scored late in the first period and

Stajan and Moore tallied within the first 9 1/2 minutes of the

second to give the Maple Leafs a 3-0 bulge. Sharp got Chicago

back in the game with goals 2:20 apart later in the session, but

Ponikarovsky put Toronto up by two with 2:50 to go.

"It was a good shot," said Ponikarovsky, who put a wrister

between goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin's pads after skating out

from behind the net and into the right faceoff circle. "I just

kept circling, trying to hold off the defense, and then I turned

and shot five-hole."

The 2008 Calder Trophy winner, Kane again made it a one-goal

game just 58 seconds into the third, and Eager forged a 4-4 tie

with 7:33 remaining, receiving a pass from behind the net by

Bolland and beating Toskala to the stick side from the doorstep

for his third goal of the season.

"They got that equalizer in the third and we were on our heels,"

Stajan said.

"Between the first and second periods, we knew we had to go

hard," Bolland said. "Then between the second and third we just

said, 'Let's go and have no give up.' Guys were yelling and

screaming, and we knew if we got one, we'd be set up to get a

few more."

Less than a minute into overtime, Martin Havlat made a slap pass

from above the slot to Bolland, who skated around defenseman

Jeff Finger at the bottom of the right faceoff circle and

backhanded the puck into the net from the doorstep to give

Chicago its fourth straight road win and fourth victory in a row

overall over Toronto.

"It was great getting that last one at the end there," Bolland

said. "It felt great. I took it in, gave it to Havlat, and he

kept looking and looking, and he gave it to me and I slid it

under Toskala into the wide-open cage."

"Bolland made a great play on that goal there to tie it and a

great move to win it," Quenneville said. "Bolland is useful in

many different ways. He's very effective and (had) a great

finish to today's game."

Stajan had a chance to give Toronto a 2-0 lead late in the first

period, when he was awarded a penalty shot after being knocked

down from behind on a breakaway with 8.7 seconds remaining in

the session. But Khabibulin made a terrific left pad save on

Stajan's backhander, keeping Chicago's deficit at one.

"Thankfully, we came out with a point," Stajan said. "We played

two great periods. You have to play 60 (minutes). Have a bad

period against a good team like that and they'll make you pay.

In this league, you can't take any time off. Most teams are too


Khabibulin made 34 saves for the Blackhawks.


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