-- Jonathan Toews did his best Johan Franzen impression on Friday night, and it moved the Chicago Blackhawks to within one victory of the Western Conference Finals.
The 22-year-old captain had three goals and two assists -- just one goal shy of what Franzen accomplished for the Red Wings on Thursday night against the San Jose Sharks -- as the Blackhawks scored four times on the power play to beat the Vancouver Canucks 7-4 and take a 3-1 lead in their Western Conference Semifinal series.
It was the second hat trick in as many games for the Blackhawks. Two days prior, it was Dustin Byfuglien's crease-crashing performance that led to three goals and a victory in Game 3.
Toews' five-point night gives him a playoff-leading 18 points, one more than Franzen and Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby. The five points also tied a Blackhawks record for points in a playoff game, accomplished previously by Stan Mikita in 1973 and Steve Larmer in 1990.
Patrick Sharp added a goal and 3 assists for Chicago, which will look to wrap up this series at the United Center on Sunday night.
The Blackhawks took advantage of the Canucks' lack of discipline for a second straight game. Shane O'Brien
took two penalties in the first period on Byfuglien, one of which led to a Blackhawks goal. Daniel Sedin
took two penalties in a span of 48 seconds of the second period. Both minors led to Blackhawks goals.
Brent Seabrook scored the first goal of the game while Tomas Kopecky finished off the scoring for the Blackhawks. Kyle Wellwood, Daniel Sedin
, Alexander Edler
and Henrik Sedin
scored for the Canucks.
once again left a lot to be desired between the pipes for the Canucks. He stopped just 27 of 33 shots, and has now allowed 11 goals in the last two games.
Antti Niemi wasn't brilliant, either, but he was good enough to get his third straight win of the series.
It took just 18 seconds for the Blackhawks to get on the board, and it was all started by Byfuglien, who carried the puck into the Canucks zone and behind the net. He dropped the puck to Toews, who fed a streaking Seabrook for the one-timer goal through the legs of Luongo.
Wellwood got the Canucks even 1:16 later when he was the beneficiary of a good bounce off his backside.
blocked a clearing attempt behind the goal line and tracked down the puck. He flipped a waist-high pass to Wellwood, who had his back turned to Samuelsson while standing in the crease. The puck ricocheted off Wellwood's pants and past Luongo to make it 1-1.
Byfuglien didn't get an assist on Toews' power-play goal at 9:23, but his big body in front of the net was once again a catalyst.
With O'Brien in the box after his second cross-checking penalty of the first period -- both infractions were drawn by Byfuglien -- Toews made the Canucks pay just 8 seconds after the ensuing faceoff. His wrister to the stick side beat Luongo, who was unable to see around Byfuglien.
The revamped Canucks power play evened the score at 2-2. Alexandre Burrows
, who rarely sees time with the man advantage, drove the net and forced Niemi to make a tough save on a good backhand shot. Daniel Sedin
followed the play and chipped the rebound past Niemi to cap the scoring in a fast-paced first period.
Toews' second goal of the game was thanks to a fortunate bounce of the stick of the Canucks' Ryan Kesler
just 27 seconds into the second period.
With the Blackhawks on the man-advantage, the puck was shot into the Canucks zone hard around the boards. It whipped around to Kesler, who deflected the puck to the front of the net, where Toews was waiting. He chipped it past an unsuspecting Luongo to make it 3-2.
Sharp made it 4-2 with yet another power-play goal at 12:47. Once again, the Blackhawks had a ton of traffic in front Luongo. Toews' wrist shot was stopped by Luongo, but Sharp picked up the rebound and snapped it home.
Toews completed his hat trick 2:35 later on the Blackhawks' fourth power-play goal of the game. Daniel Sedin
was in the box for the second time in 48 seconds, and once again the Blackhawks made him pay.
Chicago was working on a 5-on-3 after Burrows drilled Byfuglien in the head with his stick while Byfuglien was down on the ice. Toews buried a shot from the slot over Luongo's blocker to extend the lead to three and leave the GM Place crowd in disbelief.
Edler scored the Canucks' second power-play goal of the game with 1:44 left in the second period to make it 5-3. He ripped a shot from point through a Daniel Sedin
screen and between the legs of Niemi.
Kopecky put the knife into the Canucks at 6:59 of the third, not long after a power play ended. Sharp and Hossa worked a give-and-go that left Hossa alone in the slot. Luongo made the initial save on Hossa, but had no hope of stopping Kopecky on the rebound.
cut the deficit back to two with 5:23 remaining, tipping in a feed from Burrows, but the Canucks could get no closer. Dave Bolland hit the empty net with 36.4 seconds remaining to cap the scoring.
Follow Dave Lozo on Twitter: @DLozoNHL
Shift of the game: Dustin Byfuglien made his presence felt in front of the net once again for the Blackhawks, but especially so on Patrick Sharp's power-play goal in the second period. Byfuglien parked himself in front of Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo
and would not be moved. Jonathan Toews used Byfuglien's screen to let a long wrister go that Luongo stopped. But he couldn't control the rebound thanks to Byfuglien's presence. With the Canucks' defense collapsing on Byfuglien, Sharp moved in and put the rebound home to make it 4-2 Blackhawks.