Blackhawks victorious in double overtime thriller against Los Angeles.
Patrick Kane scored his third goal of the game with 8:20 left in the second overtime Saturday to lift the Chicago Blackhawks into the Stanley Cup finals with a 4-3 win over 2012 NHL champions Los Angeles.
Chicago completed a 4-1 victory over the Kings in the best-of-seven Western Conference finals and will face the Boston Bruins in the league’s championship series starting on Wednesday.
The Bruins swept the Pittsburgh Penguins in the Eastern Conference finals.
The Stanley Cup finals will pit two of the past three champions against each other.
Chicago won the Cup in 2010, ending a 49-year drought, and Boston claimed the title in 2011.
It will also mark the first time the Stanley Cup finals have featured two of the NHL’s Original Six clubs since Montreal and the New York Rangers met in 1979.
Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford stopped 33 of 36 shots he faced, and Duncan Keith also scored for Chicago in his return from a one-game suspension.
Kane’s game-winner came after Jonathan Toews carried the puck from the neutral zone up the left wing and slid a perfect pass to Kane, who one-timed a shot from the right circle.
Chicago flirted with disaster, squandering a 2-0 lead in the first period and a 3-2 edge with less than 10 seconds remaining in regulation.
Dwight King, Anze Kopitar and Mike Richards scored, and Jonathan Quick made 31 saves for the Kings, who dug in as they faced elimination but ultimately couldn’t maintain their quest to become the first back-to-back NHL champions since the Detroit Red Wings in 1997 and 1998.
Kane gave Chicago a 3-2 lead with 3:52 left in the third period when he fired a one-timer from the slot off a pass from Bryan Bickell, who had two assists.
Chicago fans were celebrating an apparent Cup berth when Richards tied it with 9.4sec remaining in regulation, deflecting a Kopitar shot past Crawford.