Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Tips for your day with the Stanley Cup

So far, Stanley hasn't called him back.
As the offseason winds on, most of the hockey world is focused on the negative. But while the ongoing Kovalchuk debacle and ominous signs of renewed labour strife dominate the headlines, one of the sport’s most positive annual traditions is well underway and could be coming to a town near you.

Over the course of the summer, each member of the champion Chicago Blackhawks is enjoying their “day with the Cup”, leading the trophy through a tour of small towns, big cities, and community barbeques. Each stop along the way is a feel-good story, as fans young and old are given a rare chance to spend time with the greatest trophy in all of sports.

But while each player is given free reign to determine how to spend their day with the Cup, the league does provide some guidance. Every year, each player receives a printed memo from the NHL head office with a few tips to help things run smoothly.

Most fans never get to see that top secret memo. That's about to change, since I just happen to have come into possession of a copy which I’ve reproduced below.
* * *

Dear miscellaneous NHL player,

Congratulations on winning the Stanley Cup! As per hockey tradition, you are now entitled to spend one full day with the trophy in a location of your choice.

Before you plan your big day, however, the National Hockey League would like to offer several suggestions which could help make your time more enjoyable.
  • Consider having several small cards printed up that explain that the Stanley Cup is a trophy awarded to the NHL champion at the end of every season. This will save you from having to constantly stop and explain everything to lifelong Vancouver Canuck fans who have never seen it before.

  • You’re likely to meet fans who will want to take photos of their children or grandchildren sitting in the bowl of the Cup. For reference, the Cup can safely hold the weight of one large toddler, two small babies, or three Montreal Canadiens forwards.

  • The Stanley Cup is notable for its tradition of recording past champions by etching their names onto the sides of the trophy. Given how easily the Cup can be scratched or dented, please respect the league’s history by only dropping it so that it lands on forgotten teams the 2004 Tampa Bay Lightning or 2006 Carolina Hurricanes.

  • When describing your Cup win as “easily the greatest moment of my entire life”, be sure to awkwardly add “um, obviously other than my wedding day” if you think your wife may be listening.

  • The Stanley Cup is 117 years old. If you decide to spend your day at Denny’s, save money by ordering its meal off the senior’s menu.

  • If you happen to meet an Ottawa Senators fan, he will inevitably want to tell you about all the Stanley Cups his team won a hundred years ago. As a representative of the National Hockey League, please do your best to listen to him politely for at least three full minutes before pulling the nearest fire alarm.

  • Remember that the Cup is made entirely of metal, and is therefore prone to rust if exposed to excessive moisture. Please keep it away from Jeremy Roenick, in case he gets a glimpse of it and starts bawling like coliccy baby again.

  • Please keep in mind that the Cup has been handled by literally thousands of players and fans over the years. Consider giving it a quick wipe with a paper towel before letting your newborn drink formula out of it.

  • Impress your friends by pointing out that the engravings on the Stanley Cup include several typos and other errors. For example, in 1975 Bob Gainey’s name is misspelled as “Gainy”. In 1981, the New York Islanders are misspelled as “Ilanders”. And in 1999, the Buffalo Sabres are misspelled as “the Dallas Stars”.

  • Occasionally, a young child may ask you why the trophy doesn’t list a champion for the 2004-05 season. This is a complicated subject, so the best way to answer this question is to ask the child to hand you their allowance, use it to light an expensive cigar, and then blow smoke rings in their face while pointing at them and laughing.

  • Finally, for members of the 2010 Chicago Blackhawks: Be sure to block off some time in your schedule for Stan Bowman to call and tell you which team you’ve been traded to.


  1. the best humour is the kind that stabs your heart; to wit: "...and in 1999, the Buffalo Sabres are misspelled as “the Dallas Stars”."

  2. LOL "one large toddler, two small babies, or three Montreal Canadiens forwards" I love it.

  3. Brilliant. Simply, stunningly brilliant.

  4. Unless I missed it how have you not mentioned this yet:

  5. @Anonymous...

    I tweeted about it. But I can't do a full post.

    It's... just... too painful right now.

  6. Please do not keep this ANNOYING Sabres meme alive. They weren't the better team ok? The weren't going to win, ok? Stop poking the Sabres fans and let them forget it, for the sake of all of us!

  7. @ JR

    Good to see that time has eased the pain...

  8. The Bob Gainey misspelling should be for 1976, not 1975.

    A small point, but still...

  9. 'And in 1999, the Buffalo Sabres are misspelled as “the Dallas Stars”.'


  10. Man I hate those Sens fans. The Senators HAVE NEVER WON A CUP!


    It was a completely different Franchise!


  11. "Consider having several small cards printed up that explain that the Stanley Cup is a trophy awarded to the NHL champion at the end of every season. This will save you from having to constantly stop and explain everything to lifelong Vancouver Canuck fans who have never seen it before."
    As a Canucks fan, that hurts. ( But I laughed anyway :) )

  12. So smart for you to bring up the 1999 Dallas Stars win. They won, it get over it and get a life already! I guess you are see things through Buffalo glasses as they can't win any championships especially to Dallas teams.

    Let's not talk about Toronto and their problems, as Dallas and many other teams are on the suck list at the moment.

  13. I laughed, then I cried, then I realized I care too much about hockey.

  14. Congrats Sean, on making it to "The Show". The National Post has picked up DGB as a regular feature. Don't forget all your pals back here @ DGB Sean.

  15. Awesome post.
    As an aside, Brian Campbell had the cup in Strathroy, Ontario not that long ago. I live close to there, but didn't get to see it, unfortunately....

  16. hehehe, good one. the second last one was awesome, not too obvious, but a good description of how fans were treated during the lockout =)

  17. Vancouver Canucks
    Dallas Stars
    Montreal Canadiens forwards

    I so should not have read this during lunchtime at work. LOL!

  18. DGB is a big boy now. Front cover of the Sports page for the National Post. Sweet ; )

  19. Nice! Congrats on being in the Post!

  20. Stars won, good goal, move on.

  21. Wow....these Dallas fans are fussing over their win more than any Sabres fan I know.

    It's called a Joke.

    This is a humour blog.

    Next you'll be saying DGB should just "Get over" the '93 Conference finals.

    Then what will 50% of his posts be about?

  22. *sniff*

    Our baby has moved to the National Post. He's all growed up, and about to lose his job when the Post goes under.


    Oh, and I better get a NHL10 Roster update with Durno wearing a BOLTS sweater.

    Oh, and umm, nice post. It was very, very funny.

  23. Brilliant stuff as usual DGB. Glad to see you're starting to get some recognition for it too, it's well deserved.

  24. Take out several bill board adds in Toronto with a blown up picture of the '67 engraving, and have the phrase ' WE WILL NEVER LET THIS HAPPEN AGAIN! WITH LUV, THE NHL.' Or just do the same thing with the 2006-2007 Anaheim engraving with Brian Burke's name circled. Which ever hurts more will do.

  25. "coming to a town near you"
    * Only if you live in Canada
    ** Or a lake near you if you live in Manitoba.

  26. @shaner hater

    The Post has never made a profit.

    I don't know why anyone would buy it off the bankrupt canwest, jsut let it die.

    (does it still only publish 6 days a week?)

    The only part of Canwest worth anything were the digital channels (most of which were from Alliance)

    And the Aspers were the biggest Liberals in the country, get your political stereotypes right.

  27. @ Anon - July 28, 2010 8:47 AM

    Someone hasn't noticed that every single newspaper in the world is suffering through the emergence of technology. While the organizations themselves may never go away, the physical newspaper has its days numbered.

  28. Nice to see a post where you couldn't make fun of the Edmonton Oilers.

    It's a rare treat these days.

  29. On a serious note, I honestly just went to the HHOF yesterday - wish I'd known about the misspellings.

  30. "...and in 1999, the Buffalo Sabres are misspelled as “the Dallas Stars”."

    And in 1993... ah never mind. Too. Much. Hurt.