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Chicago Blackhawks fan has heart attack while watching Stanley Cup Final game

Kevin Kaduk
Puck Daddy

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Dave Thomas (Thomas Family via NBC Chicago)

Hockey fans often like to joke that the thrill and suspense of playoff hockey puts them in danger of a heart attack during the game.

Indeed, it sometimes seems like having a defibrillator on hand is just as important a part of the pregame preparations as making there's enough beer or that you're wearing your lucky sweater.

But for Dave Thomas, a resident of Chicago's western suburbs, that joke turned into a reality on Monday night. The Oswego, Ill., resident went into cardiac arrest while watching Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final.

Goal lights turned into ambulance lights and Thomas wasn't around to watch the end of the game, which saw his beloved Chicago Blackhawks fall to the Boston Bruins, 2-0.

The good news is that Thomas survived the episode and got to watch Wednesday night's Game 4 from his hospital bed in Naperville.

And despite Game 4 being a roller coaster ride that seemed primed to cause more cardiac arrest, Thomas survived a 6-5 OT victory that tied the series at two games apiece.

Not that there weren't some anxious moments. (Thanks, Corey Crawford!)

NBC Chicago's Madhouse Enforcer has more on the story:

"My heart monitor was off the charts and I was yelling like I was in a bar!" [Thomas] said in an email. "The whole cardio floor had the game on! I love my Hawks but guys you're killing me for real!!"

Thomas hopes to get out of the hospital for Game 5.

Game 5 is on Saturday night and you have to expect Thomas will be back at home — or maybe even at the United Center if his newfound fame is able to score him a pair of tickets.

Shaking off a grabber, after all, is all part of the Chicago "Superfans" experience.

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