The Chicago Blackhawks know how it feels to play in front of SRO crowds of 22,000 fans for every home game, all season long. They could read the ratings reports of how many thousands more were watching the Stanley Cup Playoffs and Finals on tv. I don't think they were at all prepared for the spectacular reception they received during their June 11 victory parade. No one, least of all the players themselves, expected two million people, many dressed just like them, to line the parade route, welcoming the returning heroes. The players were pleasantly surprised if not overwhelmed.
The Stanley Cup championship banner will be a permanent addition to the United Center rafters. The Blackhawks players' and coaches' names will be etched in silver to the Stanley Cup. To a team left for dead three seasons ago, with crowds resembling those of college basketball in Chicago (sad), the Blackhawks' turnaround and resurgence is stunning and refreshing for young and old fans alike. Congratulations to the players, coaches and management for making this dream come true for millions of Blackhawks fans.