St.  Paul,  MN ( - Patrick  Kane's tally at 9:42 of overtime was  the game  and series  winner,  as the  Chicago Blackhawks  claimed a  2-1 victory  over  the  Minnesota Wild  in Game  6  of  this  Western  Conference

Minnesota  outplayed Chicago  through the first half of the extra session, but the  final break  went to  the defending  champions. A  point shot  from Brent Seabrook  hit  the stanchion behind  the Wild net  and bounced back into play.
Peter  Regin missed the  puck on the right side, but Kane trailed and lifted a backhander under the crossbar to end the best-of-seven set.

The 25-year-old native of Buffalo collected his fourth career overtime marker, and  his third  series-concluding OT winner after netting the winner in Game 6 of  the 2010  Stanley Cup  Finals and  the decider  in Game  5 of  last year's Western final.

Kris  Versteeg  also scored and  Corey Crawford came up  with 34 saves for the Blackhawks,  who claimed  a 4-2 series win  and await the winner of the Kings-Ducks battle in the conference finals.

"They  played  hard and they  never quit against  us," said Crawford. "It felt like they just kept coming harder and harder as the series went on."

Erik  Haula picked up the lone goal for the Wild, while Ilya Bryzgalov stopped 25 shots in the season-ending setback.

Minnesota  stood an  excellent chance  of taking  a potential  Game 7  back in Chicago,  having topped Colorado in the first round in Denver and winning both Game 7s on the road during its surprising 2003 postseason run.

Less  than two  minutes  after the  opening faceoff,  Chicago  took the  lead. Versteeg sent a shot from the goal line on the right wing into the crease, but the  puck caromed off  bodies in front, popped into the air and dropped behind Bryzgalov.

Haula  tied the game  at 2:29 of the second period, when he chased down a long pass  from  Matt Cooke,  flipped  the  disc  beyond  the reach  of  Blackhawks defenseman Johnny Oduya and beat Crawford on the forehand.

The goaltenders dueled for the duration.

Patrick  Sharp  was stoned on  a clean breakaway  by Bryzgalov with just under seven  minutes  played in the  second period,  then Justin Fontaine was denied from the right wing seconds later.

Crawford  remained  upright in his crease  and flashed his right pad inside of six  minutes  left before the  second intermission when Cody McCormick whipped around and shot the puck from the slot.

"He's a very good goalie,"Wild winger Zach Parise said of Crawford. "We shot, tried  to  get  traffic  in  front  of  him  and  screen  him.  We  had  great opportunities,  we  had breakaways,  we hit  posts. We  just couldn't get that second one."

Minnesota was given a golden chance to take the lead on a power play with 7:05 gone in the third, when Chicago blueliner Niklas Hjalmarsson appeared to shoot a  puck out  of play  in his  own  zone. Replays  suggested it  may have  been deflected on the way out.

The Blackhawks defense used active sticks and positioning to close off passing lanes and block shots throughout, but Crawford still had to stop Charlie Coyle on a stuffer attempt from the left side.

Crawford  had to make  four saves under heavy pressure on the Wild's first two shifts of overtime, including two in close from Keith Ballard and Haula.

                                   Game Notes

Chicago  upped  its overtime record to  3-2 in the 2014 postseason, having won its  last three games to proceed beyond regulation ... Kane and Jonathan Toews have  accounted for  seven of the Blackhawks' eight-game winning goals through two  rounds  ... Minnesota ends this  year's playoffs with a 2-2 overtime mark ...  Ballard returned  to the lineup after a one-game absence with a suspected upper-body  injury  after absorbing  a check from  behind by Chicago's Brandon Bollig  in Game 4. Bollig served the second of his two-game suspension for the hit  ... Since the 2009 playoffs, the Blackhawks have won 14 straight contests when a series is knotted at two games apiece.