Stanley Cup Final Game 5 recap: Blackhawks inch closer to Stanley Cup after 3-1 win

Jamie Squire

The Blackhawks took an early lead and held on late, and will take a 3-2 series lead back to Boston.

The Boston Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks played to their strengths in Game 5. Chicago's speed ultimately prevailed against Boston's brutality, and the Blackhawks are one win away from a Stanley Cup after a 3-1 win.

The Blackhawks dictated play from the start with quick puck movement and relentless forechecking. Chances came fast and furious for both sides, but it took 17 minutes until Patrick Kane broke the scoreless tie.

The Bruins would probably like a do-over of the second period. Not only did Kane add another goal, but they lost Patrice Bergeron for the rest of the game with an undisclosed injury. He left for the hospital later, and the Bruins seemed lost offensively without him.

Zdeno Chara finally showed up in the third, bringing the Bruins within one with a howitzer past Corey Crawford.

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The Blackhawks missed their top center as well, as Jonathan Toews didn't skate a single shift in the third. They managed to hold on to the 2-1 lead anyway, and now have a chance to win their second Stanley Cup in four years in Boston on Monday. But will they have a healthy captain?

Which goaltender rebounds?

Crawford, without a doubt, made up for his poor performance in Game 4. Everyone expected the Bruins to attack his glove-side again, but Crawford wasn't really tested there other than on Chara's goal.

Are Toews and Kane starting something?

Toews assisted on both of Kane's goals, and their line was easily the best on the ice in Game 5. The duo has looked as deadly as they were during Chicago's 2010 Cup run ever since Joel Quenneville paired them up again in Game 4. Right now it looks like that was the right button to push at the right time for Coach Q. But if Toews really is concussed after that hit from Johnny Boychuk, will he be capable of the same level of play going forward?

Can the Bruins defense return to stifling hockey?

A talking point throughout Game 5 was whether the Blackhawks had figured out Zdeno Chara. Chara was on the ice for multiple goals again on Saturday, and looked out of position a few times. As a whole, the Bruins gave the Blackhawks far too much ice to work with. They need to tighten up in their own zone in Game 6 or they're done for.

More in the NHL:

Complete Stanley Cup Playoffs coverage

Why you shouldn’t cheer for Chicago, by a Boston fan

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