Referee Kelly Sutherland’s first trip to the Stanley Cup Final was a memorable one. The veteran official handled the 2010 Cup Final between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Philadelphia Flyers.
When we spoke with Sutherland earlier this year, he talked about that series and being on the ice for the overtime Cup-clinching goal:
“The Stanley Cup Finals are truly, truly tough to beat. That experience when you’re doing the game, especially an overtime game that wins the Cup.”
“I remember that Patrick Kane goal. It happened so quick and was a weird shot. Nobody really knew it was in for a couple seconds.”
“That Chicago vs. Philadelphia series, that was my first Stanley Cup Final so that was a memorable one. Then you go another year and you’ve got Boston vs. Vancouver in a very tough, very mean series. Truly, the Stanley Cup Finals are the pinnacle. They’re the best.”
Here’s a look back at Kane’s goal:
Over at Grantland, Sean McIndoe recently took a closer look at Kane’s game-winner.
Kane fires a shot from a bad angle, and we proceed into one of the most bizarre sequences in NHL history. Kane knows it’s in, and he immediately starts celebrating. The referee [Kelly Sutherland] dodges him but otherwise doesn’t do anything. Goaltender Michael Leighton doesn’t react at all, although that’s standard procedure for Flyers’ goalies on any shot. And in my favorite moment, Chicago’s Patrick Sharp (no. 10) sprints over and elbows confused teammate Andrew Ladd in the head.
Of course, we have to wait for the replay review, which means we’re seconds away from a very cool moment when a referee will skate to center ice and announce to the crowd that … oh, wait, the officials are all just leaving. Sure, that’s just as good.
Read the whole breakdown at Grantland. And let’s hope – whenever and wherever the Cup-clinching goal happens – that we all actually get to see it go in.