WBEZ | blackhawks http://www.wbez.org/tags/blackhawks Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en The origins of Chicago's sports mascots http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/origins-chicagos-sports-mascots-108693 <p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F111260692" width="100%"></iframe></p><div class="image-insert-image ">Craig Scanlon from Chicago&#39;s Ravenswood neighborhood noticed something odd about a couple of the city&#39;s sports teams. One: The Bears and the Cubs are awfully similar mascots. Two: Are there even any bears in Chicago? Seeking some clarity, he asked Curious City this question:</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div style="text-align: center;"><em>What are the origins of Chicago&rsquo;s professional sports mascots?</em></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>In the true spirit of sportsmanship, we asked a team of WBEZ producers to take on Craig&#39;s question. And we start with Benny the Bull.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Bulls</strong>&nbsp;<strong>mascot - Benny the Bull</strong></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Benny%20the%20Bull%20original1.jpg" title="Benny the Bull (AP/File)" /></div></div><div class="image-insert-image "><br />Despite becoming one of the league&rsquo;s most successful franchises, the Chicago Bulls took some time&mdash;and some sweet talk&mdash;to get running.<br /><br />The Bulls were the fourth attempt to establish an NBA team in Chicago. First there was the Stags&hellip;then, if you can believe it, the Chicago Packers and lastly, and ever-so-briefly, the Chicago Zephyrs. According to Bulls lore (and The Chicago Bulls Encyclopedia), the club&rsquo;s first owner, Richard Klein, wanted the team&rsquo;s name to reflect strength and power and the city&rsquo;s reputation as Hog Butcher for the World.<br /><br />&ldquo;At first,&rdquo; Klein explained at the time, &ldquo;I was thinking of names like Matadors or Toreadors, but if you think about it, no team with as many as three syllables in its nickname has ever had much success except for the Canadians. I was sitting around the house, kicking these names around with my wife and three sons, when my little son Mark said, &lsquo;Dad, that&rsquo;s a bunch of bull!&rsquo; I said, &lsquo;That&rsquo;s it! We&rsquo;ll call them the Bulls!&rsquo; And that&rsquo;s how the team got its nickname.&rdquo;<br /><br />The team&rsquo;s mascot required more hot air than that. After the few other failed attempts to bring pro basketball to Chicago, the city&rsquo;s sports fans&mdash;and writers&mdash;weren&rsquo;t interested. So the Bulls brought on a former big-time fight announcer to be the team&rsquo;s public relations man. Ben Bentley, affectionately known to the boxing world and beyond as &ldquo;Benny,&rdquo; said he used to struggle to give tickets away in the early days; he used to turn up daily at Chicago&rsquo;s four newspapers to talk up the team and hand out tickets. His thought was, if he got them in the seats, he&rsquo;d make sure they had a reason to come back for more. One time, he wrestled a bear at half time to get people talking!<br /><br />And so, the team&rsquo;s original hype man lives on in its luv-a-bull mascot, Benny the Bull.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><em>-Katie O&#39;Brien</em></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Blackhawks</strong>&nbsp;<strong>mascot - Tommy Hawk</strong><br />&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Tommyhawk1.jpg" style="height: 300px; width: 450px; float: right;" title="Tommyhawk (AP/File)" />The Blackhawks are named so in honor of a the 19th-century Sauk Indian warrior, Black Hawk. His tribe made their home along Illinois&rsquo;s Rock River. He began his quest to keep that land for his people as a teenager&mdash;and did so well into his 60s. After tribes in the region signed over lands east of the Mississippi River to the federal government, Black Hawk led a rebellion. He and some 1,500 followers&mdash;500 warriors and 1,000 women and children&mdash;on a 15-week campaign which caused panic in the area. Ultimately, Black Hawk was captured and most of his followers were killed. &nbsp; &nbsp;</div></div><div class="image-insert-image "><br />It was his captors that turned him into a mascot of sorts. He was taken to Washington, where he met with President Andrew Jackson. Black Hawk became a media sensation, the symbol of resistance and rebellion, strength and resilience.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<br /><br />When the team&rsquo;s founder, Major Frederic McLaughlin, he drew inspiration from his time serving as an Army commander in WWI. His division called themselves the Black Hawks in honor of the warrior.<br /><br />Beth Carvey, directs the museum at Black Hawk State Historic Site in Rock Island. She said Black Hawk believed in fighting for his people and doing what was right by his people, even if it was a lost cause.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">The Blackhawks introduced Tommy Hawk, a hawk clad in a Blackhawk&#39;s jersey and pants and sporting the four feathers of the logo on his head, in the 2001-2002 season.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><em>-Katie O&#39;Brien</em></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Bears mascot - Staley</strong></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Bears%20mascot1.jpg" style="height: 311px; width: 210px; float: left;" title="Staley (AP/File)" /></div><p>George Halas, one of the founding fathers of the NFL, didn&rsquo;t first start with the name Bears for his original franchise. The team began playing in 1919 in Decatur, Illinois and was known as the Decatur Staleys since it was a owned by the A.E. Staley food starch company.&nbsp;</p><p>Halas took over the club in 1920 and moved the team to Chicago in 1921. According to the present team chairman, George McCaskey (and Halas grandson), the team had to keep the name Staleys for one year after they moved to Chicago, while they played at Wrigley Field.&nbsp; Halas thought about naming his Chicago team, the Cubs, but thought football players were tougher and decided to anoint them as the Chicago Bears.</p><p>The team in recent years has had a kid-friendly team mascot that is a huge, almost cuddly bear, named Staley. His name was to honor the original team&#39;s name and also the hope that the name may inspire children to seek the history.</p><p><em>-Cheryl Raye-Stout</em></p><p><strong>White Sox mascot - Southpaw</strong></p><p>The Chicago White Sox installed &ldquo;Southpaw&rdquo; as their U.S. Cellular Field mascot in 2002. The green, lizard-like character&rsquo;s name references left-handed pitchers and the ball club&#39;s location on Chicago&rsquo;s South Side. But you have to go back decades to get a taste of some of the mascot controversy that has embroiled the White Sox over the years . Andy the Clown was Andy Rozdilsky dressed in clown makeup, a bowler hat, glasses and a ruffled collared polka-dotted costume. For over 20 year he would run around the park inciting shouts of &ldquo;Gooooo yooooouuuuu White Sox&rdquo; from children and adults alike as the unofficial mascot of the Chicago White Sox. Rozdilsky clowned around Comiskey Park from 1961-1981, until Jerry Reinsdorf&rsquo;s ownership group bought the team.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/South Paw.jpg" style="float: right; height: 405px; width: 300px;" title="South Paw " /></p><p>Reinsdorf hired a design firm to come up with a new mascot for the White Sox in an effort to keep up with the times, and plushy dinosaurs, chickens and other assorted abstract animals were all the rage.</p><p>White Sox management introduced Ribbie and Roobarb, two almost inexplicably strange characters in 1981, but they were instantly unpopular as fans overwhelmingly rebelled against them, hurling insults, mock fighting and spitting on the duo. Fans waged a phone-in campaign to have the White Sox reinstate Andy, who had been banned from the park (while wearing his costume). Eventually the club compromised, saying Rozdilsky could continue to perform in the upper decks only, but fans would go out of their way to sneak Andy into the lower grandstands.</p><p>When the Sox moved to the new Comiskey Park, the White Sox officially retired Andy the Clown, and Rozdilsky retired from clowning (in costume) a few short years before he passed away in 1995.</p><p><em>-Justin Kaufmann</em></p><p><strong>Chicago Cardinals - Pom-Pon Girls, Cardettes and Gary Mann</strong></p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Cardinals &quot;Pom Pon&quot; Girls (Photo Courtesy of Chicago History Museum)" chicago="" class="image-original_image" courtesy="" girls="" history="" of="" photo="" pom="" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Cardinals%20Pom%20Pon%20Girls1.jpg" style="float: left; height: 353px; width: 400px;" title="Cardinals &quot;Pom Pon&quot; Girls (Photo Courtesy of Chicago History Museum)" /></div><p>Chicago&rsquo;s pro-football stepchild, the Chicago Cardinals, which became the St. Louis Cardinals, which became the Arizona Cardinals, didn&rsquo;t have an official mascot, according to sources with the team as well as at the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the Chicago History Museum, but in the 1940s &amp; 50s they had the &quot;Pom-Pon Girls,&rdquo; the team&rsquo;s &quot;official vocalist, Gary Mann&quot; who sang the National Anthem, and the Cardettes, a &quot; 30-girl twirling and precision group.&quot;</p><p>The Cardinals played in Chicago until 1960, when for the sake of its financial survival, the team moved to St. Louis.<br /><br />The team&rsquo;s origins go back to 1898 when owner Chris O&#39;Brien formed the Morgan Athletic Club. Some years later, he bought used jerseys from the University of Chicago. Because the jerseys were old and used, they lacked the University&rsquo;s deep maroon color and were a strange faded red. O&rsquo;Brien decided the jerseys were &ldquo;Cardinal Red&rdquo;. The new &ldquo;Cardinals&rdquo; started playing their games on Chicago&rsquo;s South Side at 61st and Racine. They were known then as the &ldquo;Racine Street Cardinals&rdquo;.<br /><br /><em>Special thanks to Jon Kendle of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Lesley Martin of the Chicago History Museum and Allison LeClair of the NFL&#39;s Arizona Cardinals.</em></p><p><em>-Steve Bynum</em></p><p><strong>Chicago Cubs - No Mascot</strong></p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/cubs%20logo.jpg" title="(Logan Jaffe)" /></div><p>The Chicago Cubs are one of four teams (Angels, Cubs, Yankees and Dodgers) with no official mascot. However, with the new 5-year, $300 million expansion plan for Wrigley Field, the club has reportedly partnered with Northwestern University to conduct a poll about what kid-friendly experiences to add to the ballpark. Among those items discussed, an official mascot, according to the <a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-03-09/sports/ct-spt-0310-cubs-spring-training-chicago--20130310_1_new-mascots-sox-fans-tommy-hawk">Chicago Tribune</a>.&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Chicago Fire - Sparky</strong></p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Sparky1.jpg" title="Sparky (AP/File)" /></div><p>The official mascot for the Chicago Fire is Sparky, who resembles an upright Dalmatian. The mascot generally wears a Fire jersey, but it can often be seen entering Toyota Park in fireman attire. The Chicago Fire made Sparky the official mascot in 1998.&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Chicago Sky - Sky Guy</strong></p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Sky%20Guy1.jpg" title="(Courtesy of WBEZ's Jennifer Brandel)" /></div><p>Sky Guy is a yellow and blue-suited sky diver with a jet pack. Sky Guy has been the official mascot since the Chicago Sky became an offiicial WNBA team in 2006.</p><p><em>-Tim Akimoff</em></p></p> Tue, 17 Sep 2013 09:55:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/origins-chicagos-sports-mascots-108693 Chicago has the Stanley Cup, now what? http://www.wbez.org/blogs/cheryl-raye-stout/2013-06/after-hockey-celebration-now-what-107891 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/rsz_cub_fans_nam_y_huh.jpg" style="float: right; height: 198px; width: 300px;" title="Chicago fans will have a tough summer with hockey done. (AP Photo/Nam Y.Huh)" /><strong>What&#39;s next for the Blackhawks</strong></div><p>Now that the hockey season is over, the Blackhawks have to deal with their free agents and the draft. The team traded Dave Bolland to the Toronto Maple Leafs for three draft picks. They also sent Michael Frolik to the Winnipeg Jets for addition draft selections.</p><p>These moves allowed the team to re-sign&nbsp;Bryan Bickell to a four year deal. The salary cap forced changes again with the roster, but not ones as difficult as the 2010 changes.&nbsp;Still, it is hard for the fans to see&nbsp;Bolland, known as &quot;the Rat,&quot; leave after scoring the winning goal for the title.&nbsp;</p><p>Frolik had a big role&nbsp;with the team&#39;s penalty&nbsp;kill unit.&nbsp;Restricted free agent Nick Leddy said he also wants to remain a Hawk. General Manager Stan Bowman said he is more than likely to match any offer. The one free agent who seems to be leaving is Viktor Stalberg. The Swedish winger showed emotion when I asked him about his situation. He thought his lack of playing time put him in a difficult spot.</p><p>&ldquo;It was one of the toughest things to go through,&rdquo; he said. He also said he doesn&rsquo;t want to play the same role again. Expect him to play somewhere else.</p><p><strong>Chicago baseball update</strong></p><p>It is almost gratifying to realize the hockey has overshadowed a very bad baseball season. Both teams have languished in the bottom of their divisions. The Cubs&nbsp;continue their rebuilding effort and&nbsp;the Sox are a very flat team.&nbsp;It appears the most interesting news for the Cubs and White Sox is who will get traded at the deadline the end of next month. With scouts lining up to watch Matt Garza pitch yesterday, he is a strong candidate for another team. The right hander&rsquo;s health is the biggest concern for a trading partner. Scott Feldman has pitched well enough to get a look by teams. The Cubs best hurler has been Travis Wood. He should be a keeper at this point.&nbsp;</p><p>The White Sox have to figure out if it is time to wave the &ldquo;white flag&rdquo; on a team that has underperformed and has looked bad on offense and horrible on defense. There are not many commodities to make deals. Jake Peavy is still nursing a broken rib. The Sox pitcher is expected to return after the All-Star break. Another player that may draw interest is Alex Rios.&nbsp; The Sox outfielder has been the most consistent hitter on the club. The best player that will be made available is Jesse Crain.&nbsp;So the&nbsp;most exciting day for baseball may be July 31: the trading deadline.</p><p><strong>Bears training camp in sight</strong></p><p>Bears fans can circle July 26 for a chance to see the team in action for the first time since Marc Trestman took over as head coach. That first practice in Bourbonnais will not be with pads. Those workouts start July 28. After attending the Bears OTA&rsquo;s and mini-camps, fans will have plenty to watch.</p><p><strong>New Bulls in the fold</strong></p><p>On Thursday night the Chicago Bulls took a guard/small forward Tony Snell from New Mexico in the first round of the NBA draft. He is considered a good shooter and is best in the &ldquo;catch and shoot&rdquo; role. Defense is also considered an asset. When you take the 20th selection, who knows. The team did do well with Jimmy Butler and Taj Gibson in the range of the first round. The took Erik Murphy a 6&#39;10&quot; forward from University of Florida in the second round.</p><p><strong>Chicago Sky and Fire</strong></p><p>The WNBA&#39;s Chicago Sky hopes to make the playoffs this year. They may have some of the pieces in place. Rookie Elena Delle Donne with veterans Sylvia Fowles and Epiphanny Prince have a winning record at 7-3 and a post-season appearance would help this franchise get legitimate interest.</p><p>The Chicago Fire has rebounded from a slow start this season. The MLS soccer team is 5-1-2 since their last loss on May 18. Right now the Fire is 5-7-3 overall.</p><p><em>Follow Cheryl on Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/Crayestout" target="_blank">@CRayeStout</a> and Facebook <a href="http://www.facebook.com/CherylAtTheGame" target="_blank">Cheryl Raye Stout #AtTheGame</a></em></p></p> Fri, 28 Jun 2013 18:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/cheryl-raye-stout/2013-06/after-hockey-celebration-now-what-107891 Afternoon Shift: Dan Savage, Blackhawks parade and the week in review http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2013-06-28/afternoon-shift-dan-savage-blackhawks-parade-and-week-review <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/americansavage.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Chicago native Dan Savage&#39;s latest book is &quot;American Savage.&quot; The Blackhawks parade takes over the city Friday. Neil Steinberg and Eric Zorn take a look at the week in review.</p><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/afternoon-shift-317.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/afternoon-shift-317" target="_blank">View the story "Afternoon Shift: Dan Savage, Blackhawks parade and the week in review" on Storify</a>]</noscript></p> Fri, 28 Jun 2013 13:02:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2013-06-28/afternoon-shift-dan-savage-blackhawks-parade-and-week-review Morning Shift: Diet trends, bikes and music http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-06-28/morning-shift-diet-trends-bikes-and-music-107894 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/Chicago Bike Sharing_courtesy of Associated Press.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>As Chicago launches its bike-share program, we hear from you about if this new service will be utilized or largely ignored. Also, Monica Eng gives us the facts and fallacies about diet trends. And Chicago&#39;s Black Ensemble Theater pays tribute to Howlin&#39; Wolf.</p><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-diet-trends-bikes-and-music.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-diet-trends-bikes-and-music" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: Diet trends, bikes and music " on Storify</a>]</noscript></p> Fri, 28 Jun 2013 08:05:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-06-28/morning-shift-diet-trends-bikes-and-music-107894 Can we call this a Blackhawks dynasty? http://www.wbez.org/blogs/cheryl-raye-stout/2013-06/can-we-call-blackhawks-dynasty-107848 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/rsz_toews_cup_elise_amendola.jpg" style="float: right; height: 226px; width: 300px;" title="Could there be more future Cup hoisting for the Blackhawks? (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)" />Can we dare say this Blackhawks team may be turning into a dynasty?</div><p>Winning the Stanley Cup in 2010 and now 2013 is a very good indicator that this team is on the right track.</p><p>It is up to the club&rsquo;s front office led by Stan Bowman with a lot of input by his highly regarded father, Scotty Bowman.</p><p>After 2010&#39;s win, Bowman had to make difficult decisions to shed players and payroll to meet the hard salary cap.</p><p>Gone were very important cogs to that title: Dustin Byfuglien, Andrew Ladd, Kris Versteeg, Troy Brouwer, Brian Campbell, Tomas Kopecky, Ben Eager, Adam Burish and Antti Niemi.</p><p>The most important aspect was keeping the team&rsquo;s core players in place: Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews, Patrick Sharp, Marian Hossa, Dave Bolland, Duncan Keith, Brent Seabrook and Niklas Hjalmarsson.</p><p>Hjalmarsson was a restricted free agent after the 2010 season and the Blackhawks matched the San Jose offer to retain the young defenseman.</p><p>Now the club has a similar scenario: Nick Leddy is also a young, restricted free agent. His quickness is a huge asset and he has room to grow.</p><p>The other big decision is what to do with free agents Bryan Bickell, Viktor Stalberg and Ray Emery.</p><p>Bickell, a former second round draft pick, had a heck of a post season. He scored nine playoff goals, including the game tying goal, in the now famous 17 second scoring spurt of the deciding Game 6.</p><p>The game winner by Bolland could be his last as a Hawk. There has been speculation that he could be traded. So again, Stan Bowman has the tough task of tinkering with his newly crowned championship roster.</p><p>Last year he stood pat with his club and made one deal at the deadline that didn&rsquo;t seem significant: acquiring Michal Handzus. The 36-year-old center had some good moments during the playoffs. It was very touching to see Toews make the first handoff of the Cup to the veteran Handzus.</p><p>Now the core of the team has capture two titles. And Kane is just 24; Toews is 25. Both have won the Conn Smythe Trophy and once coach Joel Quenneville put them together on the top line their production was a major factor for winning.</p><p>Patrick Sharp led the NHL with 10 post season goals. He rebounded well after suffering a shoulder injury during the regular season. Seabrook and Keith were stellar with their defensive play. Seabrook snapped out of a bad stretch early in the playoffs. &nbsp;</p><p>One of the reasons, beside roster issues, that the Hawks can be a dynasty is the man behind the mustache: Quenneville. He made adjustments with his lines, he sat players that needed to realize playing time is tied into good play and he didn&rsquo;t make excuses. During the strike-shortened season, the Blackhawks coach did a masterful job of resting his players with limited practices. He used both his goalies, Corey Crawford and Ray Emery, with the condensed schedule. Once Quenneville settled on Crawford for the playoffs (Emery&rsquo;s injury made the decision easy), he remained a strong supporter to his young goalie. In my mind, Crawford had only one glitch in the playoffs, Game 5 of the Stanley Cup and he won. The Hawks goalie really should have won the Conn Smythe Trophy. His role was very significant for all of the playoffs. This isn&rsquo;t a knock on&nbsp; Patrick Kane. But to me Crawford had the toughest job and came out on top.</p><p>During the season, the team has developed some young players to add to their core, Brandon Saad (20), Andrew Shaw (21), Marcus Kruger (23) and Michael Frolik (25). Kruger and Frolik have become a great duo on the penalty kill. There are also some players to watch on the Rockford minor league team.</p><p>So maybe the Blackhawks can bank a few more Stanley Cup victories in the years to come. Maybe we have a dynasty in the making in Chicago.</p><p><em>Follow Cheryl on Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/Crayestout" target="_blank">@CRayeStout</a> and Facebook <a href="http://www.facebook.com/CherylAtTheGame" target="_blank">Cheryl Raye Stout #AtTheGame </a></em></p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Wed, 26 Jun 2013 06:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/cheryl-raye-stout/2013-06/can-we-call-blackhawks-dynasty-107848 Blackhawks stage late rally to win Stanley Cup http://www.wbez.org/news/blackhawks-stage-late-rally-win-stanley-cup-107828 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/AP184940794866.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The after-party roared on until well after dawn for the victorious Chicago Blackhawks and some die-hard fans.</p><p>Hours after returning from their 3-2 win over the Boston Bruins, the team gave awed fans a close-up look at the gleaming Stanley Cup on Tuesday, hauling their prize around to bars and restaurants around the city for the second time in four seasons.</p><p>Just like in 2010, their first stop was at Harry Caray&#39;s in suburban Rosemont, where more than a thousand fans were waiting before sunrise in hopes the team would again use the Italian steakhouse to kick off their party. Players took turns lifting the trophy above their heads as fans went wild, still barely able to fathom the two third-period goals just 17 seconds apart that gave the Hawks the win.</p><p>&quot;I was in shock. ... I jumped up so high that I stubbed my toe,&quot; Frank Espinoza told WBBM radio at Harry Caray&#39;s, recalling the stunning pair of goals. &quot;I didn&#39;t realize it until the game was over; I felt a pain in my toe afterwards.&quot;</p><p>The team and their families wound their way through Chicago in a convoy of limos and buses under police escort and trailed by TV news helicopters. At their second stop, The Scout bar in the South Loop area of downtown, team members greeted cheering fans outside with high-fives before filing into the bar. Mayor Rahm Emanuel even showed up to share in the fun, WBBM reported.</p><p>Emanuel released a statement congratulating the team on a &quot;hard-fought victory&quot; and offering best wishes to the people of Boston.</p><p>Earlier, the team was greeted on the tarmac at O&#39;Hare International Airport with a water cannon salute from about a dozen fire trucks and even more police cars &mdash; all with their lights flashing.</p><p>Minutes before the chartered Boeing 737 from Boston touched down at 4:05 a.m., lightning danced across the sky as the edge of a windy storm front passed through.</p><p>Veteran forward Michal Handzus, who skated with significant injuries, was the first player to emerge from the aircraft, hoisting the Cup above his head with both hands and shaking it several times. Guests, police officers and firemen cheered at the bottom of the stairs.</p><p>Players, coaches and team officials mingled with the crowd for about 10 minutes before heading for the city to continue the party at locations that were kept secret until the team showed up.</p><p>&quot;This is completely amazing,&quot; said Willis Morgan, a 24-year-old electrical engineer, soaking up the scene of celebration at Harry Caray&#39;s.</p><p>&quot;I watched the game at work on my phone and then we came right over,&quot; he told the Daily Herald newspaper of Arlington Heights. &quot;Having the Stanley Cup back in Chicago is unbelievable.&quot;</p><p>A parade for the team was planned for Friday morning.</p><p>The Blackhawks fifth Cup in their 87-year history capped an amazing run through a lockout-shortened season that didn&#39;t start until mid-January.</p><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/chicago-blackhawks-celebration-gets-rowdy.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/chicago-blackhawks-celebration-gets-rowdy" target="_blank">View the story "Chicago Blackhawks celebration gets rowdy" on Storify</a>]</noscript></p> Mon, 24 Jun 2013 22:14:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/blackhawks-stage-late-rally-win-stanley-cup-107828 Chicago is on the brink of hoisting the Cup http://www.wbez.org/blogs/cheryl-raye-stout/2013-06/chicago-brink-hoisting-cup-107818 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/rsz_ap%20Charles%20rex%20arbogast.jpg" style="height: 428px; width: 620px;" title="Ptrick Kane and Corey Crawford have paved the way for Blackhawks championship. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast) " /></div><p>It is amusing how people that normally could care less about hockey are now into it.</p><p>Something about winning and the excitement attached to it is very infectious. At a family wedding last Friday, I had become a listener to everyone&rsquo;s opinions about the Blackhawks, even though I have been covering the Blackhawks the whole regular and post season.</p><p>People want to tell me what is happening, or quote the &ldquo;experts,&rdquo; prior to the past month, many of these folks didn&rsquo;t care to speak about icing, or glove side or controlling the puck. Now they do &ndash; and that&rsquo;s OK.</p><p>Just think: this NHL season was in a dire spot. It was dangerously close to being canceled and it was saved. A 48-game schedule was put in place and it had an interesting twist, since teams only played against their conference opponents. It would make this Stanley Cup Finals much more intriguing than anyone could imagine.</p><p>NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman can thank his lucky stars that the Blackhawks created a huge interest with the start the they had for this shortened season. With 24 straight games, they earned a point.</p><p>It even caught the attention of a NBA superstar LeBron James.&nbsp; He was in the middle of an incredible winning streak; he commented and Tweeted about the Hawks. The night the Bulls stopped that streak, Blackhawk star Patrick Kane was at the United Center for the basketball game. We had a nice chat about the mutual respect he and James have towards each other.</p><p>Now, Kane and his teammates are on the verge of doing what LeBron and the Miami Heat did last week: win a championship. The Hawks are up three games to two over the Boston Bruins and tonight they can win Lord Stanley&rsquo;s Cup on the road at TD Garden.</p><p>Winning game five was in large part because Patrick Kane shined like the star that he is scoring two goals. Kane now has an opportunity to repeat what he and the Blackhawks accomplished three years ago, winning the Cup in enemy territory.</p><p>Who could forget when the 21 year old Kane scored the winning goal in Game 6 overtime against the Philadelphia Flyers in overtime?</p><p>When it happened, hardly anybody knew it had gotten past Flyer goalie Mike Leighton. It ended a 49-year-old drought and now Kane wonders if his team has a chance to re-create the same situation in Boston.</p><p>&ldquo;I don&#39;t&nbsp;know,&nbsp;I&nbsp;think&nbsp;the&nbsp;stars would have to be aligned right for it to happen&nbsp;like&nbsp;that&nbsp;again,&rdquo; he said.</p><p>A couple of stars may either miss or may be limited, Boston&rsquo;s Patrice Bergeron did not skate on Sunday and his status is day-to-day. For the Blackhawks, Jonathan Toews is apparently better and may return after sitting out the third period on Saturday. Both are crucial to their respected teams. The absence of Bergeron allows the Hawks to win more face-offs. &nbsp;Hockey players are amazing in how much they will play with the injuries they endure. (Or maybe they are a bit crazy)</p><p>If the Blackhawks are able to beat the Bruins tonight, there will be a matter of which player would be named the Conn Smythe winner (the Finals MVP). There would be several candidates, Kane, Patrick Sharp and Corey Crawford. Yes, Crawford has a tough Game 4, but he rebounded very well on Saturday.</p><p>It is so close that it may come down to the biggest star, in possibly the biggest game of these Finals tonight. And if the Hawks are unable to close the deal, they have a chance to do it at the United Center on Wednesday.&nbsp;</p><p>You have the feeling this city is about ready to burst with excitement, even if most became fans just a few weeks ago.</p><p><em>Follow Cheryl on Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/Crayestout">@CRayeStout</a>&nbsp;and Facebook Cheryl Raye Stout #AtTheGame <a href="http://www.facebook.com/CherylAtTheGame">http://www.facebook.com/CherylAtTheGame</a></em></p></p> Mon, 24 Jun 2013 06:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/cheryl-raye-stout/2013-06/chicago-brink-hoisting-cup-107818 Hockey, youth baseball bring Chicago and Boston together http://www.wbez.org/blogs/cheryl-raye-stout/2013-06/hockey-youth-baseball-bring-chicago-and-boston-together-107792 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/rsz_brent_seabrook__game_winner_4_harry_how.jpg" style="float: right; height: 323px; width: 300px;" title="Blackhawks and Bruins knotted at 2 , thanks to Brent Seabrook.(AP Photo/Harry How)" />Despite the warming temperatures, the rush of cold air and glistening ice is still the center of attention for Chicago and Boston fans. What a blast the NHL Stanley Cup Finals is right now. And of course, it was the blast off the stick of Brent Seabrook that propelled the Blackhawks to a 6-5 overtime win.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">With the series tied at two games each, the Blackhawks have the momentum.</div><p>If this isn&rsquo;t entertaining then get your pulse checked. Wednesday&rsquo;s game had two goal leads by the Hawks only to be vanquished by the Bruins.</p><p>Goalies who have been at the top of their game both had a hard time. Stars that needed to shine did just that and so did some players with lesser accomplishments. Both team&rsquo;s defense had lapses, but for some reason the non-hockey purists don&rsquo;t care (lighting the lamp is more entertaining).</p><p>Boston and Chicago both love their sports teams. Fans on the East Coast were gracious to Midwesterners who graced their city for the two Stanley Cup games this week.</p><p>Whenever I travel to an event I spend time talking to the locals. This was one of many visits to Boston. My response is always favorable to that city and its narrow streets, rich with history, interesting people and great food.</p><p>Boston has had a sad, yet, resilient feel to it since that day in April when two bombs tore through the Boston Marathon. It doesn&#39;t feel like a city of victims, but strong-willed survivors. There are banners and T-shirts that emphasis their saying, &ldquo;Boston Strong&rdquo;.&nbsp;</p><p>When you walk down Boylston Street where the two explosions happened, there are few reminders or remnants at those two sites. Instead the memorial was moved down the street to Copley Square, where hundreds of running shoes, notes, and pictures are neatly displayed to honor the ones that died or were injured. It also felt like it was honoring that city and everyone that it touched that day. You can only hope that they will heal someday.</p><p>Back here in Chicago, the Blackhawks and Bruins will play Game 5 Saturday night. In the morning, there will be another Boston-Chicago sporting event on a smaller scale.</p><p>The Inaugural Summer City Classic will be played at Les Miller Field, at University of Illinois-Chicago Baseball Park. Chicago&rsquo;s Jackie Robinson West Little League team will take on the Boston Astros. It is an effort to bring urban youth together on the baseball field in a friendly competition and spotlight the need to help these kids look for a positive direction.</p><p>It will be presented by the &ldquo;Foundation to be Named Later,&rdquo; and sponsored by Cubs President Theo Epstein and his twin brother, Paul, a social worker. The Epstein brothers and two advocates for urban youth, Robert Lewis Jr. and Eric Davis are trying to make a difference in the community.</p><p>Theo and Paul will be the &ldquo;acting&rdquo; managers, and Cubs broadcaster Len Kasper and Hall of Famer Peter Gammons will &ldquo;call the game&rdquo;. The game is free and starts at 9:30 am.</p><p>Chicago and Boston bonding with sports is a good thing on any level.</p><p><em>Follow Cheryl on Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/Crayestout" target="_blank">@CRayeStout</a> and Facebook <a href="http://www.facebook.com/CherylAtTheGame" target="_blank">Cheryl Raye Stout #AtTheGame </a></em></p></p> Fri, 21 Jun 2013 06:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/cheryl-raye-stout/2013-06/hockey-youth-baseball-bring-chicago-and-boston-together-107792 Morning Shift: School's out for summer, may be time to make some cash http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-06-20/morning-shift-schools-out-summer-may-be-time-make <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/Crown Fountain 2-Flickr-QUOI Media.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>This week Chicago area schools are heading out for the summer. Parents and students explain what&#39;s on their agenda. What are you planning to do with more free time during the day? And as the Hawks wrap Game 4, what sports superstitions to you follow?&nbsp;</p><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-schools-out-for-summer-may-be-time-t.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-schools-out-for-summer-may-be-time-t" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: Schools out for summer, may be time to make some $" on Storify</a>]</noscript></p> Thu, 20 Jun 2013 08:07:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-06-20/morning-shift-schools-out-summer-may-be-time-make Seven ways the Blackhawks can steal back the series http://www.wbez.org/blogs/cheryl-raye-stout/2013-06/seven-ways-blackhawks-can-steal-back-series-107760 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/rsz_bickell-jagr_game_3_ap%20elise%20Amendola.jpg" style="float: right; height: 215px; width: 300px;" title="Bryan Bickell gets hit by 41-year-old Jaromir Jagr in Game 3. (AP/File)" />On social media, Blackhawks fans make it sound like the Stanley Cup is a lost cause. After losing 2-0 on Monday, tonight they play Game 4 in Boston with the Bruins up 2 games to 1 in the Finals.</div><p>While fans are in a state of panic, Hawks players remain confident in Boston since they believe they can rebound and stay in this playoff series for the long haul.</p><p><strong>What do the Blackhawks have to do to even up the series?</strong></p><ul><li><strong>Power outage.</strong> With scoring at a premium it would nice if they could solve their huge problem with the power play. They are 0-11 in this series and the Bruins have scored twice with the man advantage. Not that they can magically make it right (since it has been wrong all season), but at least get some shots in.</li><li><strong>Win a face off.</strong> The Hawks lost 40 of 56 chances overall in Monday&rsquo;s game. Bruins center Patrice Bergeron was nearly perfect handling that chore on Monday. Dave Bolland and Mike Handzus (and to a lesser extent, Jonathan Toews) were completely handcuffed in face-offs. If you don&rsquo;t control the puck then, you relinquish your opportunities to score.</li><li><strong>Don&rsquo;t get frustrated</strong> (Talking to you, Bolland.) That plays into the Bruins hands with turnovers and dumb penalties. Boston can frustrate a team: they know how to take advantage when they get into a player&rsquo;s head.</li><li><strong>Get some traffic in front of the net</strong> Yes, Zdeno Chara is a big dude and the Bruins are tough. In the first game, Andrew Shaw did a decent job there. Bryan Bickell has not been a factor since the previous playoff rounds. Another aspect missing from the first game, Hawks also did plenty of hitting, that hasn&rsquo;t been the case since that overtime win.</li><li><strong>Set some goals.</strong> All this points to is putting the pressure on Boston goalie Tuukka Rask. The Blackhawks speed and skill has been negated by the Bruins defense.</li><li><strong>Hoss in the saddle</strong>. Coach Quenneville said yesterday that Marian Hossa will likely play tonight. Hossa is one of the most productive players on the ice: he has 14 points in 9 playoff games this year. Ben Smith is a good player, but is limited to match what the Slovak winger can bring this situation.</li><li><strong>Line dancing.</strong> Quenneville has to make the right moves with his lines. The Hawks&#39; coach has been able to mix and match and it has worked more often than not. Now he has to be almost perfect, especially if his team suffers another loss. Going with Viktor Stalberg or Brandon Bolig should work, and maybe putting Patrick Kane and Toews together. Heads were still scratching with Ben Smith replacing Hossa since Smith had not played in quite a while. Coach Q was asked several questions about the mystery surrounding not the injury, but when it happened and how it was handled. There was no direct answer.</li></ul><p>Both teams had optional work-outs yesterday, so few players practiced. Trying to read the body language of the Blackhawks in the locker room, you would have no clue they are down in this series. Mainly, they know if they even the series tonight, then all, or most, of the problems have been solved by the Hawks. It is hard to tell if their confidence is wavering. That will be determined when the puck drops for Game 4 in Boston.</p><p><em>Follow Cheryl on Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/Crayestout" target="_blank">@CRayeStout</a> and Facebook <a href="http://www.facebook.com/CherylAtTheGame" target="_blank">Cheryl Raye Stout #AtTheGame </a></em></p></p> Wed, 19 Jun 2013 09:02:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/cheryl-raye-stout/2013-06/seven-ways-blackhawks-can-steal-back-series-107760