Stanley Cup Playoffs: What You Need to Know, May 30

By Chris Peters | Hockey Writer

More Playoffs: Schedule, TV listings | Expert Picks | Bracket | Scores | Odds

Every night during the playoffs, we will wrap up all the exciting action and tell you what you need to know about the 2013-14 Stanley Cup playoffs. Welcome to What You Need To Know.

Blackhawks win 4-3 | Series Tied 3-3 | Game 7 Sun.

Chicago Blackhawks: In a game that could only be described as exhilarating -- and just when it seemed this series couldn't get any better -- hockey fans are getting treated to a Game 7. They're getting one because the Blackhawks earned it despite some ebbs and flows. Chicago started strong in the first but had a 1-0 deficit heading into the second period. Chicago struck twice in the second period and if not for some key saves after that from Jonathan Quick, the Blackhawks could have run away with the game. A lapse in the third period in which turnovers led to each of the Kings' two third-period goals nearly sunk the Blackhawks. Patrick Kane and company, however, took over the game and made the most of their chances. It was by no means a perfect game for the Blackhawks, but it was a strong showing following an emotional Game 5 win.

Los Angeles Kings: The Kings didn't do a lot wrong in the game. They outshot the Blackhawks, outpossessed them and really held a physical edge for most of the game. Lapses in the opening of the second period and the end of the third is what ultimately sunk the Kings. Quick made some key saves, Drew Doughty made some incredible plays and the Kings very nearly had control of this game. When they took the lead in the third period, they couldn't step on Chicago's throat and close it out. That is going to feel like a missed opportunity and a cause for concern. Heading back to Chicago will be tough, but the Kings are undefeated in six games when facing elimination this year. Twice they won Game 7s on the road. This is going to be an interesting couple of days for the Kings as they regroup, but they've been here before.

Play of the Game: The game-winning goal was a nice shot by Kane, but it was rivaled by his pretty backhanded pass that he gave to Duncan Keith who headed for the open ice and fired a shot past Quick for the game-tying goal. Kane showed great patience and vision, drawing defenders to him to open the ice Keith needed to score. That goal really changed the tide of the third period to stop the bleeding for the Blackhawks. They needed that goal and it was all made possible by that perfect pass.

Player of the Game: I know a lot of people out there hate the term "clutch" and it's thrown around with reckless abandon, but has Kane earned the title of "clutch player?" With the Blackhawks facing elimination the last two games he has seven points. He scored twice in Game 6 and had that aforementioned beautiful assist. He has become the kind of player you want on the ice in those big situations and he absolutely has risen to the occasion. He now has seven postseason game-winning goals. He's 25 years old. What's next for this guy?

Turning Point: There were a lot of turning points in the game. The lead changed four times and there were so many key plays that seemed to be the defining moment. The final turning point came when Keith scored off the pretty assist from Kane. The Blackhawks were drowning in the third period before that goal as the Kings were just dominant in scoring the tying and go-ahead goals.

GIF of the Game: This has been a tense series, but not necessarily confrontational. That was until after the second period when goaltenders Corey Crawford and Quick shared some unpleasant words with some light shoving. The drama in this series has all been tied to the actual hockey as opposed to back and forth quotes in the media between players and coaches. This was the most confrontational we've seen things get here. GIF via @myregularface

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