By Chris Emma–
CHICAGO (CBS) — The Blackhawks’ goaltender controversy that lingered throughout the first round is apparently over. Corey Crawford is back as Chicago’s starter for the Western Conference semifinal matchup with the Minnesota Wild.
“It’s his net,” Quenneville said of Crawford on Monday morning. “Let’s go.”
The Blackhawks’ primary goaltender throughout the regular season, Crawford hasn’t started since Game 2 of the first-round series with Nashville. In Saturday’s Game 6, he was called upon to relieve Scott Darling, who allowed three goals in the first period, that following three goals allowed in the third period two nights prior in Game 5.
When given the nod, Crawford delivered. He stopped all 13 shots in 48 minutes, 44 seconds on the ice, though clearly benefiting from better play in front, and the Blackhawks clinched the series with a 4-3 win. Quenneville believed Crawford earned his way back.
“Great response in a very important game for us,” Quenneville said. “All of a sudden, it was a tight game, the game was on the line. He did everything he could. Great win for him and for us. He exited the series on a very positive note. I’m sure it was not easy watching and doing everything he could to get that chance that he got.”
In the regular season, Crawford had a 2.27 goals against average and stopped 92.4 percent of shots in 57 starts, though in the playoffs he has a 4.19 goals against average while stopping just 85 percent of shots.
No schedule has been released for Chicago’s series with Minnesota.
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