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Blackhawks fans give Quenneville lengthy ovation in return to Chicago

Team plays video tribute for man who brought them three Stanley Cup tiles

by Pat Pickens @Pat_Pickens / Staff Writer

Quenneville honored in return

FLA@CHI: Blackhawks pay tribute to Joel Quenneville

The Blackhawks play a video tribute to honor former coach Joel Quenneville as he returns to Chicago as the Panthers head coach

  • 01:28 •

Joel Quenneville was in a position he wasn't exactly used to on Tuesday night: the visiting team's bench at United Center.

The Florida Panthers coach returned to the city where he won three Stanley Cup titles and led the Blackhawks for 11 seasons.

The team honored Quenneville with a video montage followed by a lengthy standing ovation from the crowd.

During the video, the veteran coach couldn't help but smile.

"That felt unbelievable. It was a great feeling," Quenneville said. "It was kind of like saying thank you to me and I was thanking them and it was all good. So it felt great. made it a little interesting at the end of the game but that was certainly a memorable event that I'm thankful for."

Tweet from @NHLBlackhawks: Here's the video that played on the scoreboard during Coach Q's tribute. #Blackhawks

"I think that ovation was incredible. I think all of us that played for him were all smiles," Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews said. "Obviously, the fans showing him lots of respect and love (was) pretty cool to see."

"Yeah, I mean obviously you can see [it was] a special time here with the Blackhawks," Panthers forward Jonathan Huberdeau said. "He deserved that ovation and it was a pretty cool moment for him."

"Yeah, it's obviously incredible," said Panthers forward Frank Vatrano, who had a had trick in the Panthers 4-3 win. "He's done so many great things here, he's brought this city so many championships and he's a great person, also. It was great."

Quenneville felt the love as he waved and nodded to the crowd multiple times during the lengthy ovation. Fans even serenaded him by chanting "Q!" over and over. His former team acknowledged the coach with stick taps.

"I think when you've been in a city for so long and done so many great things, it's kind of hard not to tear up a little bit," Vatrano said. Staff Writer Tracey Myers contributed to this report.

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