For much of the first decade of the 21st century, the Blackhawks were known as one of the worst franchises in all of sports. It had been nearly five decades since the Stanley Cup was hoisted above the heads of the Hawks, the longest drought in the NHL.
Everything would change in the fall of 2007 when team chairman, Bill Wirtz, passed and his son, Rocky, took over. The team immediately started televising some of their games, and starting in the fall of 2008 all Blackhawks games were televised.
Chicago Cubs President, John McDonough, was hired to serve as President. His first order of business was dismissing Head Coach Denis Savard and replacing him with Joel Quenville.
The changes started to pay dividends. In the 2007-2008 season the Hawks had a winning record for the first time in six years. In the 2008-2009 season, they advanced to the Conference Finals where they lost to the Detroit Red Wings. The 2009-2010 regular season would end with the Hawks recording 59 victories, a team record.
The Blackhawks cruised through the playoffs to meet the Philadelphia Flyers in the Stanley Cup. The Hawks won a thrilling Game One at the United Center by the score of 6-5. Two nights later, the Hawks returned to the Madhouse on Madison and took a 2-0 series lead with a one goal victory over the visitors. The teams traveled to Philadelphia for Games Three and Four. Both offenses were prolific, but the Hawks couldn’t match the home teams energy and subsequently dropped both games. They would return to Chicago for Game Five, where the Hawks looked to break the tie. The offense came out smoking and scored seven goals which was enough to give them a 3-2 series lead.
With one more trip to the East Coast, the Hawks hoped to wrap up the series in Philly. Three periods was not enough to crown a victor. At the 4:06 mark in overtime, Patrick Kane slipped a shot by the Flyers goaltender to give the Blackhawks their first Stanley Cup victory in 49 years.
The Chicago Tribune’s, Hawkeytown, is a great place to see amazing pictures and read exciting stories about the amazing 2009-2010 Blackhawks season.