It’s going to be different. It’s going to be quiet. It’s going to be weird.
But according to Mark Stone, it’s going to be just as intense as ever when the games finally get going in front of empty seats at a hub city somewhere in North America.
No matter what the surroundings or what the setting is, I think the intensity is going to be there. -Stone
Vegas fans are so used to seeing their team play in front of 18,000 screaming fans inside of a building with a sound system that makes jet engines sound like lullabies. They’re also used to players both home and away explaining how important to fans are to the success of the Golden Knights.
But the fact of the matter is when you take it all away, as awkward as it will look visually, hockey is still hockey and the best players in the world will be competing for the same prize they’ve dreamed of winning since they were young boys.
I’ve played competitive games since I was five or six years old in front of no people. We’re hockey players. We’re built to play. We’re built to try and win. -Stone
It’s hard for fans to digest, but when push comes to shove, they really don’t influence the game in any significant way.
Players are used to playing in empty buildings because it’s what they all grew up doing.
I’m excited. I want to compete for the Stanley Cup. I want to play hockey and get back to work. -Stone
This really is work for these guys. And whether they are entertaining you in person or on TV, the ultimate goal remains the same.
Hopefully, empty buildings won’t last long and we’ll see the Stanley Cup lifted in a jam-packed home arena, but while the buildings are empty, rest assured that the players playing in them will be playing the same way they do when the buildings are full.
Oh, and don’t expect Mark Stone’s expressions to change either.