Words will follow in this space later. Right now, it’s time for a lengthy stroll down memory lane because we are now talking about Patrick Kane’s time with the Chicago Blackhawks in the past tense and that one hell of a realization.
Let’s start with the second game of Kane’s career, when he roasted Detroit Red Wings goalie Dominik Hasek — a player Kane grew up watching in Buffalo — with this shootout goal:
Up to the second round of the 2009 Stanley Cup Playoffs we go and this hat trick from Kane that sent the Vancouver Canucks home in Game 6, capped with an insane backhander past Roberto Luongo:
You know where we’re headed next: Game 6 of the 2010 Stanley Cup Finals.
Postseason highlights ruled the day for the first half of Kane’s career, like this hat trick in Game 5 against the Los Angeles Kings in the 2013 Western Conference Final that ended their season as well:
The 2014 playoffs did not end in a Cup, but it wasn’t due to a lack of highlights from Kane. There was this incredible backhand goal in Game 1 against the Minnesota Wild:
And this OT winner later in the same series:
Against the Kings that postseason, Kane was on a line with Andrew Shaw and Brandon Saad that damn near carried the Hawks past the Kings in the WCF by itself. In Game 6, Kane set up Duncan Keith for the tying goal then provided the winner himself:
Perhaps the high point of this entire era — with Kane as one of its central figures — came on June 15, 2015, as the Blackhawks won a third Stanley Cup in six seasons but clinched at the United Center for the first time, thanks to this Kane dagger in the final minutes of Game 6:
Seriously, go watch that again. It may not have ever been better than it was in that exact moment — a high we’ll be chasing as Blackhawks fans for the rest of our lives.
Those postseason games never included shootouts, but there were plenty of shootout highlights to be had from Kane’s career:
The next season, Patrick Kane and Artemi Panarin became teammates and hilarity ensued. Watch him make the New York Islanders look like a bantam team for about two minutes before ending the shift with a goal:
Watch how freaking far this backhand pass goes from Kane to Panarin:
Listen to the visiting broadcast’s reaction to this one:
I swear that Kane and Panarin invented this exact goal: Kane skates behind the net from left to right but throws a backhand pass back out in front to Panarin, who’s waiting just above the goal line to one-time it into the net:
There were a lot of Kane and Panarin highlights. Here are a bunch more of them:
For those who appreciate the offensive artistry between those two, a chance to watch them together on the New York Rangers for the rest of this season is a tantalizing prospect.
As Panarin departed, Alex DeBrincat emerged, and another formidable offensive duo with Kane created highlight after highlight:
Want some backhand spin-o-rama goals? We got those, too:
How about a spin-o-rama pass?
As Kane grew older and younger players who referenced him as influences on their own playing styles — like Toronto Maple Leafs forward Auston Matthews — started coming into the league, Kane was still ready to offer a reminder of who he was:
In his final game as a member of the Blackhawks, on his final shift while in overtime, this went down as Kane’s final act (because we’re just going to ignore the shootout, as everyone should — unless it’s a Kane highlight):
What a ride.