I remember exactly where I was. I was in my parents basement on the right side of dusty old black couch that had my ass groove dug in deep from 10 years of watching other teams in the Stanley Cup Final. I didn't want to be at a bar or with friends. This game was too important. Needed to be in my zone with my people. My dad was there. The guy who funded 15 years of my hockey and several years of tickets going back to the Chelios years and even through the Arnason, Bell, Calder years. My kid brother was there. He was 13 years old. Just a little kid who never really went through the bleak years as a Hawks fan and also somehow didn't go through an awkward phase in his pre-teen/teenage years so fuck him. Glad he was there, but fuck him. That goal went in. I popped up. My dad tried to settle me down, thinking it wasn't in but I had already grabbed the champagne. We all hugged and jumped up and down as the players did the same. It was an incredible moment and a great memory that I'll have forever. That is what makes sports so special. The shared joy and experiences. The silly peaks that punctuate your life that can otherwise be filled with degrees of pain of the mundane. That's what was happening for me at this very moment and moments like that were happening all over Chicago.
If you're a Philly fan I imagine you were sitting, waiting, hoping the refs would stop the celebration. Then you started watching the replay on your TiVo over and over trying to prove the puck didn't go in until your dad yelled at you to stop and you said "fuck off dad" and then he grabbed you by your wife-beater t-shirt and you pushed back and ripped his gold chain off his neck.