(CHICAGO) — Defenseman Brent Seabrook scored 3:35 into overtime, giving the Chicago Blackhawks a 2-1 victory over the Detroit Redwings in Game 7 of their Western Conference Semifinals series Wednesday.
The win was the Blackhawks third straight as the team erased a 3-1 series deficit to advance to its first Western Conference Finals since 2010.
Seabrook scored when he fired a wrist shot at Detroit goaltender Jimmy Howard. The shot bounced of Detroit defensemen Niklas Kronwall’s leg and into the net.
“The coaching staff harps on it all the time, put the puck on net and anything can happen,” Seabrook said when describing the winning goal. “I just tried to get a chance and get it past Kronwall and luckily it bounced off him and went in.”
A few Chicago players and most of the United Center crowd thought the game had a good chance of being over before Seabrook’s goal.
With 1:47 left in the third period, Hawks defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson slapped a shot past Jimmy Howard that would have given Chicago the 2-1 lead. But just before the goal, dueling penalties were given out for roughing to Chicago’s Brandon Saad and Detroit’s Kyle Quincey, nullifying the goal.
“That was a tough call,” Blackhawks winger Patrick Kane said. “I don’t think many people in the building heard the whistle. It was a tough break for us and we just wanted to regroup and get back at it in overtime.”
Chicago now advances to the Western Conference Finals to take on the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings.
Game 1 is Saturday in Chicago. The puck is set to drop at 5 p.m. Eastern.
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Jill Martin, CNN