Hawks-Kings Game 2
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Corey Crawford already had "solid goaltender" on the resume. On Sunday night, he added captain support leader.
Crawford took exception when Kyle Clifford threw a few punches at Jonathan Toews, and grabbed the Kings forward by the head near the end of the Chicago Blackhawks’ 4-2 victory over the Kings on Sunday night. The victory gives the Blackhawks a 2-0 Western Conference Final series lead heading to Los Angeles, where Games 3 and 4 are Tuesday and Thursday, respectively.
The Blackhawks were closing out Game 2 against the Kings when former Blackhawks forward Colin Fraser hit Toews near Crawford’s net. Defenseman Michal Rozsival went after Fraser and Clifford grabbed Toews, taking some shots on him. Crawford grabbed Clifford, ending the fracas.
“I wasn’t expecting that. It should be the other way around,” said Toews who, after serving a penalty for that mess, skated over to Crawford with a smile. “It’s playoff time and he showed his true colors, that he’s going to step in and help a teammate out no matter what. It’s pretty good to see a goaltender get in there like that.”
For Crawford, it was just defending a teammate.
“The guy grabbed him, got a couple free shots. I figured it was enough. I just decided to go in there and grab his head,” Crawford said to laughs.
Coach Joel Quenneville called the fracas “spontaneous combustion.”
[HIGHLIGHTS: Blackhawks strike early, take 2-0 series lead]
“You know, things happen,” he said. “Sometimes you can't forecast or predict that stuff.”
Rozsival wasn’t surprised to see Crawford step in.
“Crow’s a tough guy. I just saw the scramble and jumped in there,” Rozsival said. “When your captain gets attacked you want to help him out, defend him. That’s what he did.”
The Blackhawks have preached teamwork and standing up for each other all season. Sunday’s little melee was one more example.