Antti Niemi's days of driving a Zamboni are over. Instead of cleaning the ice in his native Finland, he's clearing away pucks and hoping to help the Chicago Blackhawks hoist the Stanley Cup.The next two games will be played in San Jose on Wednesday and Friday. The Hawks are two games closer to Lord Stanley's Cup.
Niemi made 14 of his 32 saves in the third period and Chicago beat the Philadelphia Flyers 2-1 on Monday night to take a 2-0 series lead.
It was different-styled game from the opener, when Niemi let in five goals but the Blackhawks outscored the Flyers 6-5.
"I think our 'D' played maybe a little bit better in front of the net in blocking shots and letting me see the puck," Niemi said.
Defenses were tightened, bodies were flying and tempers flaring. There was one striking similarity: Young Chicago stars Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane again failed to account for a point - and, once again, it didn't matter.