Tue May 11 08:26pm EDT
Tonight's Game 6 between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Vancouver Canucks will not look like Game 5. The Blackhawks, up and down the lineup, didn't play with the intensity and focus required to close out a series. Now they're thinking smarter, and it's not just because they have their bags packed for San Jose, according to ESPN Chicago:
"We have to play patient," Patrick Kane(notes) said before boarding the team's charter. "If they play like that, kind of like we did against Nashville, we have to just play patient and capitalize on the chances we do get. ... They played a little different. They kind of sat back and waited for us to make mistakes. The biggest thing was they scored a minute into the game and got some life and kind of just sat back."
Chicago coach Joel Quenneville called Game 5 "a get-our-attention type of game." So consider it gotten. Other items for your consideration before Game 6 in Vancouver:
• We're holding our breath about defenseman Sami Salo(notes). Not because he's a game-time decision (he is) but because we haven't actually exhaled since he took a biscuit to the store in Game 5. Adam Burish of the Blackhawks to Sportsnet, with a quote of the postseason candidate:
"If he plays tonight, man, that guy's an ironman. ... Maybe I will rub up against him, so I can get some of that toughness. How you can play through something like that blows my mind."
Don't rub too hard, sir.
• Great headline or greatest headline? From the Vancouver Sun: "Sami's whammy leaves Canucks' blue-line clammy."
• Mark Potash of the Sun Times on why it's all about discipline: "The Canucks have outscored the Hawks 11-9 at even-strength in this series. In games in which they haven't lost their minds, they lead 2-1. So when the Canucks had the advantage, they lost their composure. With the desperation of impending elimination, they kept their cool and played their best game of the series."
• Finally, Chicago Now presents "Top Ten Vancouver Canucks I'd Like to Take a Swing At." The hell did Willie Mitchell(notes) do to this guy?