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Round 2
Round 3
Stanley Cup Final

Pregame sets the tone

Sunday, 04.10.2011 / 12:36 PM

By Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer / Red Wings-Blackhawks: A Live Blog

As soon as the lights went off and the Blackhawks opening video montage, complete with the fantastic stitching of the Blackhawks' logo, started blaring through the arena the crowd stood up and started roaring.

Yeah, this isn't just your average regular season game.

The fans got quiet as they watched the video, as they always do, but when the Hawks came streaming onto the ice one by one with Metalica's "Enter Sandman" blasting through the arena the place absolutely erupted. They went nuts for Corey Crawford and the rest of the Hawks starting lineup, including Niklas Hjalmarsson, Brian Campbell, Jake Dowell, Fernando Pisani and Byran Bickell.
 
The soldout crowd got louder and louder as anthem singer Jim Cornelison performed the National Anthem in front of the scorer's table.

There are very few venues in North America that get amped up for an anthem like United Center does for a Blackhawks game.

It's time to drop the puck. The crowd is ready. Are the Wings and Hawks?

Let's find out.

Playing for my favorite team growing up, I've probably scored that goal a million times in my driveway. It feels good to actually do it in real life.

— Dale Weise, who grew up a Canadiens fan, on scoring the overtime winner in Montreal's 5-4 victory against Tampa Bay in Game 1