This is the winning goal in game one of the Stanley Cup finals between the Vancouver Canucks and Boston Bruins. It may look a bit haphazard at first, but this is exactly the kind of speedy transition game that the Canucks were pulling off all night long - forced turnover, speed, quick pass, scoring chance. Watch that replay as Kesler adeptly pokes the puck off the defender's stick, spins with agility to collect the puck and stay onside, takes a moment to find Hansen streaking into the zone, and delivers a crisp lead pass to the trailing winger who then puts it forward to Torres for an earned empty netter. A winning goal for my team, with seconds left in the game. In sport, you can't get much better than that.
The goal was scored at nearly 4am local time, and I could hardly contain myself. My eldest son was up with me and we were relieved not only that this goal won the game but also that it eliminated the possibility for overtime - thus affording us the opportunity for some shut-eye (after a brief skype conversation with my brothers in the Vancouver area, of course). As a long time fan who has learned to get used to losing, I was so nervous for this game. But these poised and speedy Canucks instilled confidence and injected an excitement for hockey I haven't felt since 1994.