It was on June 24, 2006 that the Chicago Blackhawks drafted a young Jonathan Toews as their first pick in the NHL Draft. Now in 2013, Toews is the captain of the Blackhawks. Seven years to the day he was drafted, he scored the first goal in the Stanley Cup Final game that saw the Blackhawks win their second Cup in four years.
It was a remarkable season from the start, with their 24-game point streak. They broke records and made history right and left, staying on top of the league and eventually winning the President’s Trophy. Everyone automatically wrote them off after that because of the “President’s Cup Curse”, because no team had won both that and the Cup in the same year since 1994. They broke that curse with authority tonight, as well as the “Marian Hossa Curse” that followed Hossa from Detroit to Pittsburgh. It was broken in 2010, and it was shattered for certain with this win.
When Toews won the Conn Smythe Trophy in 2010, he pointed to Patrick Kane and said “It should’ve been you,” eluding to his overtime goal. This time, Kane has won the Conn Smythe, and he publically said that Corey Crawford was snubbed. It’s a testament to this team that they each acknowledge the performance of their teammates ahead of their own. By the way, Kane is now the fourth American to win the Conn Smythe, along with Brian Leetch, Tim Thomas and Jonathan Quick, and he’s the third American in a row to win it.
You can’t celebrate the Blackhawks’ win without saluting the Boston Bruins, who played with heart and soul. Look to Jaromir Jagr, who may have played in his last NHL game. Look to Gregory Campbell, who took a shift on a broken leg in the Eastern Conference Final. Look to Patrice Bergeron, who played in Game 6 despite serious injury. The Bruins did not let up on the Blackhawks, and they tried their best. They and their fans can feel proud that their team got this far for the second time in three years.
Congratulations to the Blackhawks. This was well earned, and the city is awaiting your and Lord Stanley’s return.