ST. LOUIS — Troy Brouwer tapped in his own rebound to snap a third-period tie and the Blues advanced to the second round of the playoffs for the first time in four seasons, eliminating the defending Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks 3-2 in Game 7 of their Western Conference quarterfinals series Monday night.
Brouwer, who played for the Blackhawks' Cup winner in 2010 and was among the veteran additions to a team trying to break through, swiped in a backhander. The goal at 8:31 was his first in 24 postseason games since 2013.
Jori Lehtera scored his first career playoff goal and rookie defenseman Colton Parayko also scored for the Blues, who avoided another inglorious finish. They led 2-0 early before the Blackhawks tied it in the second period.
Chicago just missed a chance to tie it when Brent Seabrook's shot went off both posts with about 3:30 left.
Predators force Game 7: James Neal scored the winning goal late in the second, and the Predators held on to beat the Ducks 3-1 and force the first Game 7 in franchise history.
Nashville lost its previous five Game 6s when needing a win to stay alive in the playoffs, and it snapped a three-game skid to the Ducks to force this series back to Anaheim for the deciding game Wednesday night.
Shea Weber had an empty-net goal with 10 seconds left off an assist by Neal.
Mattias Ekholm also scored a goal for the Predators, and Pekka Rinne made 26 saves for the win.
First—None. Penalties—Arvidsson, Nas (interference), :34; Anaheim bench, served by Perron (too many men), 3:09.
Second—1, Nashville, Ekholm 2 (Jarnkrok, Ellis), 8:10. 2, Nashville, Neal 2 (Johansen), 17:45. 3, Anaheim, Kesler 3 (Perry, Fowler), 19:46 (pp). Penalties—Ekholm, Nas (holding), 19:17.
Third—4, Nashville, Weber 2 (Neal), 19:50 (en). Penalties—None. Shots—Anaheim 7-11-9—27. Nashville 8-12-6—26. PPs—Anaheim 1 of 2; Nashville 0 of 1. Goalies—Anaheim, Andersen 3-1-0 (25 shots-23 saves). Nashville, Rinne 3-3-0 (27-26). A—17,113 (17,113). T—2:31.