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Hawks Win the Stanley Cup!

admin June 9, 2010 NHL 10 Comments

June 9, 2010 –Adam Steevens

For the first time since 1961, the Chicago Blackhawks are the Stanley Cup Champions, defeating the Philadelphia Flyers four games to two on goals from Byfuglien, Sharp, Ladd, and in the first overtime, Patrick Kane scored the Stanley Cup winning goal.

“The Flyers briefly led 2-1 after Ville Leino set up Briere’s goal with a nifty pass. Leino streaked down the middle into open space because Blackhawks defenseman Keith Duncan slipped. Briere one-timed the pass into the far corner for his 12th goal of the playoffs to give the Flyers the lead. But Sharp answered quickly, firing a shot under Leighton’s left skate to tie it at 2. Sharp’s 11th of the postseason came during a 4-on-4.
Blackhawks goalie Antti Niemi stoned Simon Gagne on a breakaway early in the second to keep it 1-1.

Chicago outshot Philadelphia 27-13 through two periods. Leighton was shaky in the second period after 16 saves in the first. He was pulled for the second time in the series after giving up three goals in the first period in the previous game.The home team has won each game in this series, starting with Chicago taking the first two and Game 5.

Byfuglien slipped a shot past Leighton from right in front 20 seconds into a power play for his 11th goal of the playoffs, giving the Blackhawks a 1-0 lead. A high-sticking call on Flyers defenseman Chris Pronger, a strong contender for the Conn Smythe Trophy, gave Chicago the man-advantage. Pronger, coming off a career-worst minus-5 in a 7-4 loss in Game 5, had two penalties in the opening period.

Hartnell scored his seventh goal of the playoffs on a backhander off a rebound of Briere’s shot with 26.5 seconds left to tie it. An orange-clad, sellout crowd of 20,327 began chanting “Let’s Go Flyers!” during a stirring pregame video montage and kept it up. For the final time this season, Lauren Hart, the daughter of longtime former Flyers broadcaster Gene Hart, sang “God Bless America,” alternating lyrics with Kate Smith, who was on a video image. Smith’s rendition of the song has been a rallying anthem for the Flyers since the mid 1970s.

The Flyers are trying to continue a remarkable postseason run. They needed a shootout victory over the New York Rangers in the regular-season finale just to get into the playoffs. After beating New Jersey in five games in the first round, they staged one of the greatest comebacks in sports history by rallying from both a 3-0 series deficit and a 3-0 hole in Game 7 to beat the Boston Bruins. The Flyers then beat Montreal in five games to reach the finals for the first time since 1997.” {AP}

Patrick Kane’s Stanley Cup winning goal was a bad-angle shot that managed to barely sneak by Philadelphia goaltender Michael Leighton. The play was under review for a couple of minutes, but the Hawks players were already celebrating before the official call came down from Toronto. The Conn Smythe Trophy was awarded to Jonathan Toews, which wasn’t much of a surprise, considering he led all players in scoring for a majority of the post season.

Congratulations to the city of Chicago, and to Hawks fans who suffered through some tough years to get to this point. Here’s the game winner from Patrick Kane:

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