Blackhawks Beat Lightning In 6, Win 3rd Stanley Cup Since 2009
Well, it’s fair to call the Blackhawks a dynasty. On Monday evening in front of an elated hometown crowd in Chicago, the Hawks won their third Stanley Cup since 2009, shutting out the Lightning 2-0 in Game 6. It is their third in the last six years and sixth in franchise history.
And for fans in attendance, this one was particularly special, as the previous two championships had been won on the road. In fact, the last time the Blackhawks won the Cup at home was in 1938.
While Tampa put up a good fight, Chicago dominated the series with an overall talent advantage that was plainly obvious throughout. Superstar Patrick Kane, who had been held scoreless through five games, scored what turned out to be the game-winning goal in the second period, while defenseman Duncan Keith added a soul-crusher in the third.
Keith was an absolute standout for the Hawks this postseason, logging over 700 minutes over the course of the playoff. Despite playing defense, it was only fitting that he’d score the final goal of the season. Goalkeeper Corey Crawford was also outstanding for Chicago, stopping all 25 shots Tampa tossed at him.
And as for that dynasty talk? There is simply no denying it anymore. Although the Blackhawks haven’t won consecutive championships in the same way the Islanders and Oilers did in the 80s, and the Canadiens did in the 70s, this isn’t the same NHL as it was decades ago.
It’s harder than ever to win a Stanley Cup today, with the league having expanded from an original six in 1966 to 30 teams today. Then there’s the implementation of a salary cap in 2004-05, which ushered in a new era of which many teams still struggle to navigate.
Much like the Patriots in the NFL, the Blackhawks have set the standard of continued success in the modern NHL. And for the time being, it seems as though the rest of the league is just trying to play catch up.