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stanley cup finals

Patrick Kane, Stanley Cup Hero

Not even four months after Canada's best young hockey player scored an overtime winner to give his country a much-deserved gold medal, one of America's best young hockey players scored an overtime winner to give his team's city a much-deserved Stanley Cup. But when Patrick Kane slid the puck past Michael Leighton from a terrible angle last night — from a similar spot that Sidney Crosby scored from in Vancouver, no less — he may have been the only one in the building who knew he'd done it.

Because the puck got stuck in the padding of the goal, the red light didn't go on, the whistle didn't immediately blow, and no goal signal was made. But Kane saw it cross the goal line, knew it was lodged in the far side of the net, and immediately took off to celebrate the 4–3 game-six win with goalie Antti Niemi, where he'd eventually be joined by his teammates.

So Chicago has its Stanley Cup (its first since 1961), Marian Hossa has his ring (his first despite three straight trips to the finals), and Patrick Kane's season will be remembered for a whole lot more than an unfortunate cab ride and an even more unfortunate haircut. See the video of the game winner (and the awkward celebration) below.

Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images