CHICAGO -- It was exactly what the Blackhawks needed, and in more ways than one. Patrick Kane with the puck, a three-on-one advantage, and what do you know, a little open ice in front of him.
Kane hesitated. Dave Bolland was one good option, Patrick Sharp the other, and the puck seemingly was frozen on his stick. Fortunately for the Hawks, Predators goalie Pekka Rinne froze as well.
Kane's third-period goal Sunday night gave the Hawks a 2-0 lead, some breathing room. It was also a glimpse of Blackhawks' hockey in the midst of a tempo firmly established by Nashville. And like many a great country ballad, upbeat it is not.
But upbeat are the Hawks as they head to enemy territory with a 2-0 victory and a 1-1 tie in the best-of-seven first-round series.