The Chicago Blackhawks are Stanley Cup Champions for the third time in six years as they defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning 2-0 in game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals to capture the 6th cup in the history of the Blackhawks. Duncan Keith’s goal in the 2nd period would be all the Blackhawks needed to capture their 6th cup and Patrick Kane’s 3rd period goal was just icing on the cake.
The Blackhawk faithful had waited 77 years to see the team celebrate a cup win on their home ice, and this one was well worth the wait. Corey Crawford was a machine tonight, stopping everyone of the 25 shots the Lightning took. Crawford’s 5th playoff shutout was a key factor for the Hawks, and he still can’t even explain how it feels to be a two-time Stanley Cup champ.
“It’s unbelievable feeling,” Crawford said. “It’s hard to describe. You can never describe it.”
Blackhawks defender Duncan Keith as we mentioned above won the Conn Smythe Trophy, recongize the most vaulable player throughout the series. Keith was voted the unanimous winner of the award, the first defender since Scott Niedermayer to win the award as Niedermayer won it in 2007.
“It’s unbelievable how close the series was, how one little mistake can make the difference,” said Keith, who had 21 points and over 700 minutes played in the series.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman announced prior to handing Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews the 35-pound cup that the Blackhawks are what we all thought. A dynasty.
“It doesn’t seem real, Toews said. It feels like a dream.”
The Lightning game into the game limping as leading scorer Tyler Johnson reveled after the game that he had been playing with a broken wrist.
“It’s disappointing,” Johnson said. “You want to give 100 percent, especially in situation like this, but are really not capable of doing that.”
Goalie Ben Bishop had also been playing with a tear in his groin.
“I can’t feel much anyway right now. Just unfortunate. Didn’t feel good out there, but was able to get through it,” Bishop said.
Don’t think the Lightning are using the injury excuse for the reason they lost, however.
“Yeah, I’m sure whatever protocol comes out, guys, eventually we’ll let you know what happened,” Tampa Bay Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. “Guys had significant injuries, and it was clear. I’m sure you watched. It affected big parts of our team.
“But we’ve got by on our depth all year. Got to give a lot of credit to Chicago. Extremely deserving champion. They’re a really, really good hockey team. You give them an inch, they took a mile. That’s what they did.”
The Blackhawks are favored to repeat in 2016, as they open as a 6-1 favorite to win it all followed by the New York Rangers and Anaheim Ducks at 8-1.