Slow start, fast finish for Blackhawks as they win Game 1

Thu Jun 4, 2015 6:10am EDT
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(Reuters) - The Chicago Blackhawks overcame a slow start to race past the Tampa Bay Lightning 2-1 in the opening game of the Stanley Cup Finals on Wednesday.

Trailing 1-0 deep into the third period, Tuevo Teravainen tied the contest with a wrist shot at 13:28 before Antoine Vermette came through with the game-winner with less than five minutes to play. With the game looking like it would head to overtime, Chicago put pressure on the Lightning and when the puck came loose in their zone Vermette gathered and fired it past goaltender Ben Bishop to complete the comeback.

"We just had to stay patient and not get frustrated," Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford told reporters after making 22 saves.

Crawford made a stop on a Ryan Callahan shot just before Chicago's equalizer to keep his tem alive.

"I was a little more aggressive than usual. I just tried to take away any net he may have."

Chicago's outburst ended a shutout streak for Bishop who had held opponents scoreless for a total of 113:28, dating back to Game Six of the Eastern Conference final.

Bishop finished with 19 stops but the Lightning would lament their lost opportunity.

"You want to protect the lead and we've been quite successful in doing so in past games," said Lightning defenseman Anton Stralman said.

"This time, we're playing a highly-skilled team and they're a little bit too good to give that much room and that much puck possession. So, lesson learned."   Continued...

Chicago Blackhawks center Antoine Vermette (80) celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal against the Tampa Bay Lightning in the third period in game one of the 2015 Stanley Cup Final at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports