Sports That Matters
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June 12th, 2019
Congratulations to the St. Louis Blues 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Champions!
1. The St. Louis Blues dominate the Boston Bruins in Boston with a Game 7 victory 4-1, for the Blues first ever Stanley Cup.
AP Photo/Michael Dwyer
It was a back-and-forth series to complete a Cinderella comeback from last place halfway through the season to Stanley Cup Champs.
St. Louis was last in the Central Division on Jan. 3 but then went on a tear, winning 30 of its final 45 regular season games to sail into the playoffs as the fifth seed in the Western Conference.
Coach Craig Berube took over in November, and after the first of the year, his coaching style began to have an impact with the previously underachieving Blues.
The Blues’ status as the oldest team still in the league never to have won the Stanley Cup is over.
It was the 390th playoff game in their history, none of which, until Wednesday night, had clinched a championship.
In NHL history had seen only the 17th Game 7 since the finals went to a seven-game format 80 years ago.
The Blues were the last of the six teams that joined the National Hockey League in the 1967 expansion to have won the championship.
One of the six teams, the Oakland Seals, eventually merged with the Minnesota North Stars, which later moved to Dallas and won the title in 1999.
The Bruins, seeking their seventh Stanley Cup, fell one night short and had to settle for second-best for the 14th time in franchise history.
2. Stanley Cup Game 7 recap.
Ryan O’Reilly with 3:13 left in the opening period made history by getting St. Louis on the board first, tipping a shot past Tuukka Rask.
O’Reilly became the first player to score in four straight Final games since Wayne Gretzky in 1985.
O’Reilly also set a franchise record with 22 career postseason points in the playoffs.
O’Reilly won the Conn Smythe Trophy as MVP of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
More Game 7 Highlights…
Alex Pietrangelo charged the net during a bad change for the Bruins and put the puck past Rask to increase the Blues’ lead to 2-0 with 7.9 seconds left in the first.
Brayden Schenn scored a third-period goal to eliminate the Bruins’ last flicker of hope of a comeback and Zach Sanford make it 4-0.
Rookie Jordan Binnington made 32 of 33 saves to lock down the Bruins offense.
Jordan Binnington became the first rookie goalie to win 16 playoff games.
Only a late goal from Matt Grzelcyk wound up the Garden one more time, and the faithful that were still in the building cheered one more time.
At one point in the first period the Bruins were outshooting the Blues 7-1 and the Bruins outshot the Blues 23-10 through 40 minutes and 33-20 overall.
3. Boston was ready and had support inside the TD Garden.
As thousands of fans gathered outside the stadium, many of the luxury suites were filled with Hollywood stars including Michael J. Fox, Denis Leary and John Kraskinski.
New England Patriots Super Bowl champions Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski passionately showed their support for a fellow Boston franchise, as did Pats owner Robert Kraft.
Also, in the group was three-time Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman and Liam Fitzgerald, a young Bruins fan who survived cancer.
Bruins captain Zdeno Chara when he was introduced got a huge roar from the crowd. Chara was playing with what many believe is a broken jaw.
Hours earlier, police were setting up sidewalk barriers in preparation for the first championship-series Game 7 in Boston since the Celtics beat the Lakers to win the NBA title on June 12, 1984, exactly 35 years earlier.
In addition to the 17,565 fans inside the TD Garden, thousands more were expected to pack bars and restaurants in the vicinity of the arena.
St.Louis Blues captain Alex Pietrangelo accepts the Stanley Cup from Commissioner Gary Bettman.
Boston Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy speaks with media following his team’s 5-1 win vs. the St. Louis Blues in Game 6 of the 2019 Stanley Cup Final.
Want some more?!
Ryan O’Reilly describes the emotions of winning the Stanley Cup with the Blues and tying Wayne Gretzky for consecutive Final goals at four.
Jordan Binnington has a spectacular performance in net as he backstops the Blues to a Game 7 win and a Stanley Cup title.
Blues superfan Laila Anderson talks about never doubting the chances for St. Louis lifting their first Stanley Cup title and thanks to the city and fans of St. Louis for all the love and support she has received.
From 1950 to today, check out the best Game 7 moments in Stanley Cup Playoffs history from NBC Sports.