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BOSTON - The first ever Stanley Cup final meeting between the Chicago Blackhawks and Boston Bruins was a series that neither team's fans will soon forget.
The Bruins and Blackhawks, both members of the National Hockey League's Original Six, played a tough six-game affair that saw Chicago come out on top following a dramatic 3-2 victory on Monday night.
With the Bruins leading 2-1 late in the third and looking poised to force Game 7, the Blackhawks scored twice in a 17-second span to stun the Bruins and win their second title in four years.
Chicago, which had the best record during the lockout-shortened regular season, now has five championships. Like their 2010 triumph over the Flyers in Philadelphia, this year's clinching victory also came on the road.
The Bruins, who won the Cup in 2011 over the Vancouver Canucks, also had a memorable season and became a symbol of a city's resilience following April's Boston Marathon bombings.
The Bruins trailed the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-1 in the third period of Game 7 of their first-round series, only to storm back to tie the score before a securing a dramatic overtime victory.
The seventh post-season meeting between the Blackhawks and Bruins included three overtime games — highlighted by Chicago's triple OT victory in Game 1 — strong goaltending and hard hits that affected star players on both teams.
Boston goalie Tuukka Rask and Chicago counterpart Corey Crawford were each brilliant at times, especially in Game 1.
Chicago captain Jonathan Toews and Boston star Patrice Bergeron missed large chunks of Game 5 with injuries. Both players took part in Game 6.
The series was the first all-Original Six final since 1978-79, when the Montreal Canadiens downed the New York Rangers in five games.
After a 2012-2013 campaign that started with months of labour unrest, fans of all 30 teams are left with little time to regroup before next season. The NHL draft is set for Sunday in New Jersey, while the free-agency period opens July 5.
Training camps open in mid-September.
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