The opportunity to snag a loose puck in the stands at an NHL game doesn’t come around often; and when the rubber disc does go flying from the rink into the seats, chances are there’s a some tall, aggressive person that’ll snag it before, say, a young fan gets their shot at the puck.
Perhaps knowing this, a young Tampa Bay Lightning fan put his faith in the holiday spirit to produce a souvenir puck at their game against the Nashville Predators on Thursday. He sat near the glass, holding a sign that read “ALL I WANT FOR XMAS IS A HOCKEY PUCK.”
Santa must have heard him. Or, at the very least, Santa let some dude in the neighboring section know about this Christmas wish.
In the second period, a puck flew over the glass and was caught by a Lightning fan. As he was celebrating his conquest, the boy held out his Christmas puck wish sign. The fan immediately handed the puck over to the young lad, pointed at him with the universal sign for “you da man!” and the fans cheered the selfless act as the young fan waved the puck in the air.
If that’s not the essence of the fan experience in the NHL, we don't know what is: Young fans participating in decades-old traditions, and older fans doing whatever they can to grow that hockey love. (That said, we hope something paid it forward to the dude that gave away his puck. And by "paid it forward" we of course mean "paid for his next round.)
What a cool moment. Also cool for all involved: Tampa Bay won the game, 4-2.
A Christmas wish granted. But we do hope this young fan understands this is a one-time deal and doesn’t return to the arena with signs reading “ALL I WANT FOR XMAS IS AN UPGRADE TO A LUXURY SUITE” or “ALL IT WANT FOR XMAS IS STEVEN STAMKOS’ CONTRACT.”
Then it again, it did work once …