(Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune)

(Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune)

When the fan base was weighing in on the better matchup for the Blackhawks in the Western Conference Final, it seemed the majority chose the Kings over the Anaheim Ducks.

The third period of Game 2 showed why a series with the Kings wasn’t something I wanted to go through.

After the ‘Hawks controlled the majority of the first two periods, Los Angeles took advantage of a couple of early power plays in the third on its way to a five-goal period to even the series heading to Hollywood for Game 3 on Saturday.

The Blackhawks capitalized on a pair of timely changes, as Nick Leddy took an outlet pass and put a nifty backhand past Jonathan Quick before Ben Smith scored merely seconds after he got on the ice to give the ‘Hawks a 2-0 lead into the final two minutes of the second. Brent Seabrook had a prime chance to put them up three, but Quick’s sliding save across the crease kept L.A. within a pair.

Justin Williams had a puck go off his sake and trickle past Corey Crawford near the end of the second, and from there it was all Kings.

The Kings’ explosion shouldn’t really surprise anyone. This a team that stormed back from 0-3 down to San Jose to win the series and 2-3 against the Ducks before dominating Game 7 on the road. As much as we commend the Blackhawks for never being out of a game, series, whatever, L.A. has the same pedigree – and maybe even more dangerous when backed into a corner.

Jeff Carter scored three goals in the final 20 minutes, Crawford wasn’t even close to his best and the ‘Hawks could merely stand by and watch – sometimes literally – as the Kings erased everything the ‘Hawks had established through 40. The bottom line is that when this L.A. team gets rolling, it is downright scary. And it’s production in this series has come mainly with its top line being cancelled out by Toews and company. With Darryl Sutter getting the last change at Staples Center, the ‘Hawks aren’t likely to get that benefit in the next two games.

Some key points…

*  The third-period collapse began 74 seconds in, as Brandon Bollig took an interference penalty so far behind the play that the camera crew didn’t even catch it. The Lion’s infraction was amazingly stupid, even for him. Also, it came mere seconds after going offside on what could’ve been an odd-man rush with Jonathan Toews.

If anyone with credentials would like to ask Q to inform them of what positives Lion brings to this team when dressed, it would be much appreciated. And it would be even better to ask a follow-up when Q tries to dance around reasonable logic with his bullshit response. But, you can bet your ass he’ll still be in the lineup when Andrew Shaw returns for Game 3.

* The too-many-men penalty probably goes uncalled 70 percent of the time, but it was another mistake on the ‘Hawks part that led to the second of L.A.’s power-play goals that put the Kings ahead. It’s probably one Crawford would love to have back, but the dangers of the Kings’ PP unit were shown in full through the first four-plus minutes of the period.

Opponents went 2 for 27 with the man advantage over the Blackhawks’ nine previous postseason games, and it took L.A. mere minutes to double that total.

*  Kris Versteeg sitting next to Lion in the press box at the Staples Center would be a welcomed sight.

*  For all the disappointment that comes after that meltdown, the ‘Hawks have controlled roughly 80 of the 120 minutes of this series and are heading to L.A. where the Kings have only managed a split in six playoff games. Nothing is fucked, dude.