There was no red light, just Blackhawks flying over the boards in celebration.
Sticks and helmets were thrown, scattered all over the ice and still no signal for a goal. And yet Patrick Kane had sneaked the puck past Flyers goalie Michael Leighton four minutes and 10 seconds into overtime for the 4-3 win and the Stanley Cup.
The show was so improbable, so lightning quick, that an observant fan on twitter noted that for two seconds, Kane was the only person in the world who knew the Blackhawks had won.
But win they did. Kane's shot lifted the Blackhawks to their first championship since 1961.
"What a feeling. I can't believe it. We just won the Stanley Cup," said Kane to reporters afterward. "I can't believe this just happened. It's something you dream about, scoring the final goal in the Stanley Cup finals."
The victory was the first time Chicago had won in Philadelphia since 1996, and it marked the Blackhawks' first Stanley Cup since in almost 50 years.
U.S. & World
Kane's teammate and the team captain, Jonathan Toews, became the second straight kid captain to lift the Stanley Cup. He also claimed the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP.
Quite a performance for the center, who celebrated his 22nd birthday a little more than a month ago. Sidney Crosby captained
the Pittsburgh Penguins to the Cup title last year when he was 21.
Toews also nearly finished atop the playoff scoring race with 29 points. Only a three-point night by Philadelphia's Danny Briere in the Cup clincher on Wednesday night kept Toews from a most impressive hat trick of hardware.
"I'm exhausted now -- more tired than I was during the game," Toews said. "The last couple of nights have been torture, not being
able to sleep, being so excited every moment of the day. It's everything it was hyped up to be."
Rookie goaltender Antti Niemi echoed that sentiment.
"It's pretty unbelievable," he said. "It's been a great, great year, starting in Helsinki and coming all the way and getting more games and being able to get a victory here in the Stanley Cup finals. It's unbelievable."
The partying began in earnest. The Blackhawks, who were scheduled for a pre-dawn flight back to Chicago, partied for several hours in their locker room with Lord Stanley's cup. When it came time to finally shower, they carried the cup with them.
Coach Quenneville said the partying wasn't likely to stop anytime soon, either.
"We had [the Stanley Cup] in '96, and I'll tell you, it was the best party all summer," he said.
Back in Chicago, fans spilled out into the streets, completely blocking Madison Street and congregating in smaller -- but still vocal! -- groups in River North and Wrigleyville. Throughout the city, the sounds of honking horns and cheering echoed off the buildings.
In Wrigleyville, police began asking fans to disperse around 12:30am, and cops began to confiscate open containers and pour them on the ground. There were some reports of rowdiness -- fans on balconies throwing full beers at crowds below -- but the celebrations were largely peaceful.
Let the Celebratin' Begin!
Celebratory parade & rally... Friday at 10:30 a.m.
Ticker tape parade begins from Wacker and Washington and proceeds east on Washington to Michigan, then Michigan to Wacker.
A Championship Rally will begin at 11:30 a.m at Michigan & Wacker.