The clock was ticking down to less than 90 seconds remaining. Less than 90 seconds until the Blackhawks, down 2-1 in Game 6 to the Boston Bruins, were heading back home for Game 7. Or so we all thought.
But as improbable as the Blackhawks’ start to their regular season was, it seemed only fitting that they’d have an improbable end to it. And over a 17-second span, they did.
The Blackhawks’ scoring twice in 17 seconds – first from Bryan Bickell and then from Dave Bolland – put a stunning punctuation mark on their season as they came back to beat the Bruins and claim their second Stanley Cup in four seasons. Now, relive Game 6, as well as the previous five of the Cup Final, when Comcast SportsNet Chicago airs them all beginning at 9 a.m. Wednesday morning.
[RELIVE THE MAGIC: The Blackhawks' "2013 Road to the Cup"]
The matchup was an NHL dream, really: two Original Six teams, two cities rich in sports tradition – especially hockey – and two teams that had won Cups recently. And the series lived up to its billing.
The Bruins brought the physical element and great goaltending from Tuukka Rask, as expected. The Blackhawks brought their depth and scoring swagger. From start to finish and in some cases extended finishes, it was an entertaining series that brought a thrilling end to a season some wondered would ever happen out of the lockout.
But in the end for the Blackhawks, it was a magical end to compliment their magical start: drama, suspense and unreal results. As Jonathan Toews hoisted the Cup, then immediately passed it off to the more senior members of the team who hadn’t won one before – Michal Handzus, Jamal Mayers and Michal Rozsival – the 'One Goal' was realized again.
“It’s a great feeling, an unbelievable feeling. I couldn’t be happier right now,” said Corey Crawford, who silenced his critics with his Cup victory. “Everyone battled together, every guy in that room is behind each other. No one ever got down. We were always confident with each other. We played our game throughout the whole thing. I’m so proud of everyone.”