One game from the abyss has turned into one game from the bliss of the
They took another step toward dethroning their nemeses of last season, moving to within one game of eliminating the reigning Stanley Cup champions, the
With a 3-1 series lead, they can clinch it Wednesday if they win Game 5 at the
The Kings exploded for three first-period goals Monday night, in their first six shots. Defenseman
Their penalty-killing was flawless and they went two for three on the power play. And they had the usual scoring balance, as five different Kings had goals in Game 4.
Perhaps just as important, Doughty has talked big and followed it up in a big way.
"I know how much I mean to our team and how much I mean to this series if we want to win it," he said. "Even though I'm playing against a guy like [Blackhawks captain
Doughty's will to win against the Blackhawks is two-fold, starting with the fact that Chicago dethroned the Kings as Stanley Cup champions last season in the conference finals. There's also the fact that Doughty was a shadow of himself in the second and third rounds a year ago, playing on a severely injured ankle.
"That stuck with me. It was a frustrating time," he said. "I wanted to win that Cup again so bad along with all the other guys on my team. It hurts when you can't get what you want and what you want back.
"It really gave me the drive, even more of 'the want' to beat this team just because they did take our season away last year and it's our turn to do it back to them."
The Blackhawks mounted some push-back Monday, starting late in the second period with
That goal came off a furious scramble finished off by
Chicago pulled Crawford for an extra attacker with 3:01 remaining, and Kings rookie forward Tanner Pearson scored an empty-netter with 1:02 left to make it 5-2.
The Blackhawks rallied from a 3-1 series deficit against Detroit last year in the playoffs, and the Kings were quick to mention that.
"Every team has been through experiences which make them better, especially Stanley Cup championship teams like Chicago and us," said Kings winger
Toews, who assisted on Bickell's goal, said it starts with the small things, to try to recapture confidence
"Here we are. We've got to give it everything and nothing less," he said. "Credit that team, they're a good team, but we know we've got more. We know that there's something else we can bring to the table.
"We've just got to do some little things here and there to make ourselves feel good and get that confidence, get that swagger back to our game."