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Chicago Blackhawks beat Calgary Flames 4-1
CALGARY, Canada -- They're young, they're inexperienced and they're moving on.
The Blackhawks captured their first postseason series victory since 1996 with a 4-1 win over the Calgary Flames in Game 6 of the Western Conference quarterfinals Monday night. The Hawks took the best-of-seven series four games to two and finished off the Flames at the Pengrowth Saddledome for the first win by a road team in the series.
Dustin Byfuglien had a goal and two assists, Patrick Kane had a goal and assist and Adam Burish and Brian Campbell also scored to propel the Hawks and goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin to the victory. It was the fourth consecutive season the Flames have been eliminated in the first round.
The Hawks will next face the Vancouver Canucks in the conference semifinals.
"We have a lot of young guys in here," Kane, 20, said. "It's like we don't even know any better but to play so hard and come out with a win against an experienced team like that.
"They have a lot of talent, a couple of superstars on their team. It feels good to get the first one and hopefully we can move on and continue our pretty good year."
The Hawks came out of the gate clicking on all cylinders in a style reminiscent of their dominating 5-1 victory in Game 5 on Saturday night at the United Center. On Monday, Kane opened the scoring early in the first period with his second goal of the series when the second-year winger fired in a rebound of a shot by Kris Versteeg (two assists) that Byfuglien also got a stick on. It was the fifth consecutive game the Hawks have notched a goal with a man advantage
A terrific effort by Byfuglien led to a goal that gave the Hawks a 2-0 edge midway through the opening period. The winger scooped up the puck beyond the Flames' blue line, carried it behind the Calgary net, and despite defenseman Jordan Leopold hounding him, found Burish between the circles and fed him. Burish fired a one-timer past Miikka Kiprusoff for his first goal of the series.
On the other end of the ice, Khabibulin was putting together his second consecutive strong outing. The veteran finished with 43 saves in winning his second game in a row.
"It didn't look like our best game, but we did what we had to," Hawks captain Jonathan Toews said. "We weathered the storm when we had to out there. That lead we got early in the game was huge for us.
"We got some big saves from our goaltender. It's exciting to look ahead and be excited about that opportunity we have, and I think we can definitely enjoy this one."
Late in the second, Campbell scored his first goal in 50 games to give the Hawks a 3-1 lead. The veteran defenseman scored the power-play goal when his slap shot from just inside the blue line appeared to deflect off Flames defender Adam Pardy.
After Todd Bertuzzi scored in the opening minute of the third to make it 3-1, the Hawks held on and Byfuglien sealed the deal with an empty-net score in the waning seconds.
"The other guy on the other end (Khabibulin) was phenomenal," Flames coach Mike Keenan said. "He won the hockey game for them."
The Hawks caught a break as injured Calgary All-Star defenseman Dion Phaneuf was scratched from the lineup.
Phaneuf was injured after Troy Brouwer crunched him with an open-ice check in the third period of Game 5. The players knocked heads on the hit and Phaneuf left the ice wobbly on his skates and didn't play Monday.
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