Day-57 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs:
Observations and Random thoughts by Chris Madsen:
AND ON THE 56TH DAY OF THE STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS–CHICAGO PARTIED…INTO THE 57TH DAY: It will be :17-seconds of hockey that will be talked about for years to come. Trailing 2-1 to the Bruins, with just 1:16 to play, the Blackhawks Jonathan Toews proved why he is one of the best young Captain’s in the game when he out-battled a pair of Boston defenders and spotted an open Bryan Bickell to breathe new life into the Hawks:
Leading up to an unlikely hero stepping up to seal the deal for Chicago:
This remarkable comeback added an exclamation point to an incredible season for Chicago that started with an unprecedented run of at least a point registered in each of their first 24 games of the season, that culminated with their second Stanley Cup Championship in four seasons.
AND ALL OF THAT TAKES US TO THE ONE THING THAT SEPARATES THE NHL FROM ALL OF THE OTHER MAJOR SPORTS: I especially want you to play close attention to when Bruins Defenseman Zdeno Chara greets Blackhawks Captain Jonathan Toews. Tell me what other sport out there has two warriors–one who beat the other physically (Chara) and the one who beat the other offensively (Toews) embracing in the end…
IN THE FINAL ANALYSIS: This has been a blast for me–and I sincerely hope that you could recognize the passion I have for this game in every word I have written. In my 33 years of covering the National Hockey League, this was the first time I was asked to openly prognosticate the Stanley Cup Playoffs start to finish–and if I may say-so myself–I went a respectable (11-4) from the Opening Round to the Final…and picked the Blackhawks to win the whole thing from the get-go.
I want to thank RINKTIME Founder John Kirker for the opportunity to re-connect with many of my hockey fans and I want to thank you–our loyal followers–who tuned in from around the globe to check-out my musings.
So, I will closeout this blog that same way I closed out every Mighty Ducks telecast over nine seasons…”Until the next time we lace ’em up and hit the ice…I’m Chris Madsen”