A few minutes before puck drop at T-Mobile Arena tonight the Golden Knights will unveil two banners celebrating winning the Pacific Division and the Western Conference. It’s sure to be a joyous occasion for all involved… except maybe Paul Stastny.
Stastny was a member of the Winnipeg Jets in last year’s Western Conference Final. His season ended three wins short of a Stanley Cup Final berth, which would have been the first of his career. His season ended at the hands (or gloves) of the Golden Knights. Now, a member of the Golden Knights he’ll be on the ice watching his new teammates and fans celebrate the same accomplishment that left him coming up just short of a lifelong dream.
I asked Stastny what he’s expecting to be feeling when he sees the banner and it was clearly something he had yet to think about as he was almost speechless at first trying to answer. After about 10 seconds of “um’s” and “I don’t know’s” he did find the words, and in typical Stastny fashion they were pretty much perfect.
Happy for the guys but it’s just added motivation for the guys that were here last year and for the new guys to see what they did last year and not be satisfied. Everyone had a good ride last year but they didn’t finish it off and that’s what they want to do. -Paul Stastny
He followed that by saying there will be no hard feelings or negative emotions when he does indeed physically see the banner for the first time.
We’re definitely going to have to follow up on that one though. It’s easy to say it won’t be tough, but I’m not sure about you, I almost vomited when I saw the clip of the Capitals raising their banner last night, and I’m just a guy who writes hockey. Can’t imagine what it must feel like for the guys playing.