VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- Down often so far during the playoffs, the young Chicago Blackhawks never feel as if they're out of any game.
An early, two-goal hole didn't faze them one bit Saturday night.
Patrick Sharp scored twice to tie it and Dave Bolland put Chicago ahead with a short-handed breakaway to help the Blackhawks tie their second-round playoff series at a game apiece with a 6-3 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday night.
"It's always a long ways from being done, especially when we're only down by two goals and we know we haven't played our best hockey yet," said Jonathan Toews, the Blackhawks' 21-year-old captain. "Once we get that first goal it's a confidence boost and every line feels they can go out and score."
Sharp put the Blackhawks on the board midway through, sliding a rebound between the legs of Roberto Luongo, then wiring a one-timer over the goalie's glove during a 5-on-3 power play three minutes later.
Bolland gave Chicago its first lead of the series with 3:10 left, beating Luongo with a forehand deke after being left behind the defense on the penalty kill.
"We're a confident team and we know despite the score we're still in any hockey game," Sharp said. "It's nice to have the ability to come back again."
In Game 1 the Blackhawks rallied from three goals behind in the third period only to lose in the final minutes. This time they kept going.
Ben Eager, robbed by Luongo earlier, extended the lead 2:13 into the third period, converting a nice pass from Adam Burish, who had two assists. Patrick Kane added his third goal of the series three minutes later.
Game 3 is Tuesday in Chicago, where the Blackhawks won all three during a first-round victory over Calgary.
"We've got our confidence level up here after this win and we need to keep it going into Chicago," said Bolland, who added his second goal into an empty net after Henrik Sedin scored on another Canucks' power play with 2:45 left.
Nikolai Khabibulin recorded his first victory over the Canucks since 1998, when he was with Phoenix, ending an 0-11-1 skid against Vancouver.
The Canucks lost Salo, their top all-around defenseman, after he opened the scoring with a power-play blast 5:35 in. After wincing noticeably at the bench, Salo, who also missed Game 4 of a first-round sweep of St. Louis, was followed into the locker room by the team doctor and did not return.
Coach Alain Vigneault said that Salo was day to day with a lower body injury, and wasn't sure if he'd travel to Chicago.
It was the third goal and sixth point for Salo, who scored the winning goal with 1:13 left in Game 1. Salo, who tops 100 mph in the annual hardest-shot contest, wasn't missed after Chicago took two penalties a minute later.
"We do need Sami, but I don't think that was the reason we lost tonight," defenseman Shane O'Brien said. "We weren't the better team tonight."
Edler, who took the Canucks' hardest-shot title from Salo this year, replaced him and one-timed a point shot past a screened Khabibulin on the 5-on-3. But Salo was missed on Bolland's goal as forward Mason Raymond, playing out of position at the point, allowed the Chicago forward to sneak behind him.
Just as they did in the third period of Game 1, Chicago carried the play for long stretches after falling behind. And just like Game 1, Khabibulin played a big role with timely saves, robbing O'Brien in the slot and Alex Burrows alone in tight on a power play early in the second period. He also forced Steve Bernier wide on a long breakaway minutes before Bolland put Chicago ahead.
Luongo made a spectacular diving stick stop on Eager 9:15 into the second, but Sharp started the comeback a minute later. Eager scored Chicago's seventh goal in two games after St. Louis only managed to beat Luongo five times in four games in the first round.
Shortly after Khabibulin robbed Rick Rypien, Kane added to the total with his fifth of the playoffs, tying the 20-year-old with four others for the NHL lead.
Sedin scored on another Canucks' power play with 2:45.
"I didn't expect to win every game," said Luongo, who made 26 saves. "Those guys are a good team too and they're going to win games.
Patrick Sharp scores two goals and Patrick Kane adds a goal and an assist in the Game 2 victory. (Getty Images)
|Chicago (1-1) «||0||3||3||6|
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|05:35||Power Play - Sami Salo (3), Slap Shot. Assist: Sedin, Sedin|
|06:44||Power Play - Alexander Edler (1), Slap Shot. Assist: Sundin, Bieksa|
|10:24||Patrick Sharp (4), Wrist Shot. Assist: Burish, Walker|
|13:30||Power Play - Patrick Sharp (5), Slap Shot. Assist: Seabrook, Kane|
|16:50||Short - Dave Bolland (2), Slap Shot. Assist: Keith|
|02:13||Ben Eager (1), Wrist Shot. Assist: Burish|
|05:48||Patrick Kane (5), Backhand Shot. Assist: Toews, Brouwer|
|17:15||Power Play - Henrik Sedin (3), Wrist Shot. Assist: Sundin, Edler|
|18:50||Dave Bolland (3), Empty Net, Unassisted.|
|05:05||Hjalmarsson, 2 min, Delay of Game - Puck Over Glass|
|06:16||Eager, 2 min, Roughing|
|06:16||Rypien, 10 min, Misconduct|
|06:16||Burish, 10 min, Misconduct|
|06:34||Keith, 2 min, Slashing|
|13:56||O'Brien, 2 min, Hooking|
|18:52||Demitra, 2 min, Interference|
|02:17||Seabrook, 2 min, Roughing|
|06:53||Sundin, 2 min, Slashing|
|11:41||Bieksa, 2 min, Hooking|
|12:00||Mitchell, 2 min, Delay of Game - Puck Over Glass|
|15:54||Kane, 2 min, Hooking|
|12:20||Rypien, 2 min, Holding|
|13:37||Havlat, 2 min, Slashing|
|13:37||Kesler, 2 min, Roughing|
|13:37||Toews, 10 min, Misconduct|
|13:37||Burrows, 4 min, Roughing|
|13:37||Burrows, 10 min, Misconduct|
|13:37||Toews, 2 min, Roughing|
|14:29||Byfuglien, 2 min, Roughing|
|14:29||Mitchell, 2 min, Cross-Checking|
|14:29||Byfuglien, 10 min, Misconduct|
|14:29||Rypien, 2 min, Roughing|
|14:29||Rypien, 10 min, Misconduct|
|15:13||Bolland, 2 min, Interference|
|16:52||Seabrook, 2 min, Tripping|
|Shots On Goal|
|Power Play Conversions|
|Attendance - 18630|
|Referees - Brad Watson, Tim Peel|
|Linesmen - Steve Miller, Scott Driscoll|