Konroyd's keys to Game 6

Konroyd's keys to Game 6
May 27, 2013, 3:00 pm
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Steve Konroyd

1. Continue the physical play: The stats say Detroit had more hits than Chicago last game, but ask the guys on the ice and they’ll tell you that the Hawks won the physical battle. Huge hits by Andrew Shaw, Bryan Bickell and Brent Seabrook inside the first 5 ½ minutes set the tone for the rest of the game. Not surprisingly, those three players had real solid games, along with Michal Handzus who led the team with four hits. It raised the intensity of the game for the Blackhawks and it got everybody involved. Their motto has to be hit early and often.

[MORE: Blackhawks prepare for an 'even tougher' Game 6]

2. Power play showed some life, give it some more juice: After scoring on their first power play in Chicago during Game 1 of this series, the Blackhawks went goalless in their next 12 man-advantage attempts. That all changed last game, where the net front presence of Shaw was superb. Screening and redirecting a goal of his own, and then setting a pick so that Jonathan Toews could score his first of the post season, his play on that special teams unit was special on this night. Your power play doesn’t have to score every time, but create some energy that you can carry over into 5-on-5 play.

3. Momentum doesn’t just happen, you’ve got to create it: Yes, the Blackhawks won a huge game two nights ago in Chicago to stave off elimination. It gives them the momentum going into Game 6 until the puck drops. After that, it’s up to the players to gain that momentum again. Quick shifts, on the body, clean break outs, lots of shots –- it all contributes to momentum and that’s what the Hawks have to be thinking each and every shift.