Party pics: Stanley Cup Game 7
The Red Wings faced off for the final game of the Stanley Cup playoffs against the Pittsburgh Penguins Friday night at the Joe. Without a doubt, tix to the big show at the Joe were the hottest tickets of the night (even with Jack White's new Dead Weather playing at the Stick). But fans who couldn’t make it to the Joe still watched the Wings downtown at Cheli’s Cheli Bar and a ton of other downtown hot spots.
If you’re going to watch the Red Wings at a bar, it’s a no brainer to watch the red and white at a bar owned by a Red Wing. Cheli’s is owned by Detroit Red Wings Defenseman Chris Chelios. Cheli’s is located right in the heart of Downtown Detroit near Comerica Park.
It boasts a full-scale bar and 36 flat-screen TVs. That’s 36 flat screen’s TVs showing the finale of the battle for the Stanley Cup.
Dan Martin, 48, of Ottawa Lake said, “I came to Cheli’s because I knew it would be a lot of fun and I couldn’t get tickets to the game so the next best thing was to come down here. It’s a Friday night and it’s game seven, it doesn’t get any better than this.”
Martin even had his own prediction of the way the game would play out. “I think they’re going to do it early tonight. They’re going to win definitely."
It’s not often that the NHL Finals goes the seven game distance. It’s actually very rare.
That made the game even more special. The Wings had an advantage playing at home in front of the Wing Nuts.
Cheli’s was packed from front to back as the fans showed support as the Wings tried to clinch the series and hoist the 35-pound cup over the city of Detroit.
Tim Klonica, 21, of Lincoln Park chose Cheli’s since he couldn’t snag tickets to the Joe.
Klonica said, “This was the next best thing since I couldn’t get tickets to the game. I think it’s over for Pittsburgh. I don’t see any way that Detroit doesn’t win. Home ice has been key through the whole playoffs for us. The home team takes the cup.”
Everyone was in great spirits and confidently put all their hopes in the Wings. And with good reason, there was a big celebration in that very place last year.
Kevin Riney, 50, of Westland remembers Chelios celebrating with the cup in 2008. Riney said, “I remember Chelios was walking up and down the bar with the cup and I wanted to be a part of it. I always want to be a part of anything going on in Detroit whether it's baseball or hockey.”
Many fans from around the Detroit area came to watch the Wings, but not many came from as far away as Lisa Jorissen, 44. She’s a Detroit native, but now lives in Newport Beach, CA.
“I’ve been a Red Wings fan since I was a little kid going to the games with my dad.”
Jorissen is a very dedicated fan and proves it when she said, “I left last Friday morning. When I left the office last Thursday I said, ‘I’m leaving, I’m going to game five and I’m not coming back until we win the cup!’”