CHICAGO - Patrick Kane scored two goals for Chicago, the first came moments after the Minnesota Wild scored a pair of goals in the third period to tie the game.
Kane's third-period goals along with an empty netter turned what was a close game into a 5-2 victory in Game 1 for the Blackhawks.
"It was a very winnable game for us ... but we're not fretting here," said Wild coach Mike Yeo.
Kane's game winner was a terrific dash through the Minnesota zone. Kane, from a very difficult angle, managed to put the puck over Ilya Bryzgalov and into the net.
The Wild found themselves trailing 2-0 heading into the third. The deficit came after a pair of power play goals, one each in the first and second periods. Bryan Bickell, who scored two goals in the game, got the first goal at 14:48 in the first period, and Marian Hossa scored at 11:21 in the second.
"There was a couple of small breakdowns, a couple of small areas that turned into big mistakes that when you are down a man, that we have to fix," said Yeo. "I don't think we were completely sharp in that area ... It's tough when you are down minus-2 in special teams."
Hossa scored the goal and added an assist on the first two goals. Both penalties came on two costly high-sticking penalties on Minnesota defenseman Jonas Brodin.
The start of the third period was terrific for the Wild. Clayton Stoner scored, he had three shots on a goal and six hits on the night, including one that knocked Andrew Shaw out of the game early in the first period.
Kyle Brodziak scored less than five minutes after Stoner's shot found the net. But the tie would not last long thanks to Kane's puck handling on goal No. 1 and a great pass from Patrick Sharp on goal No. 2.
Overall, the Wild outshot Chicago 32-22. At times it appeared they dominated the game. There were also countless scoring chances in which Wild players missed the net completely.
In the end, Yeo didn't feel like the team played it's best hockey, or even close.
"When you don't have the urgency and attention to detail in all the little areas of the game, then you are leaving it up to chance," Yeo said. "I thought that's what we did tonight."
He also said that he had no problem with the play of Bryzgalov, who let in four goals on 21 shots.
"(Chicago) is a talented team that can capitalize," Yeo said. "They don't need 30 opportunities to put five in the net. So, we need to make sure we do a better job eliminating the opportunities and the quality opportunities."
Yeo said it's not about effort. He says it's about doing things the right away, and being ready for Sunday.
"We have to recognize the importance of the next (game). They are going to recognized the importance of it," Yeo said. "And the areas where we weren't good enough, the guys that we know can bring more, we'll be ready to bring it."
Game 2 of the best-of-seven series is Sunday on KARE 11 at 2 p.m. Pregame airs at 1 p.m.