The day the Stanley Cup is presented is the best and worst day on the hockey calendar.
It's the worst because it signals the end of another NHL season and we then have to deal with three months of finding other things to do with our lives. It's the best because the Cup presentation ceremony -- from the tradition of booing Gary Bettman to the captain's first raise to the ensuing on-ice player parade -- is emotional and can't not put a smile on one's face.
What we see on the ice those nights has evolved over the years. As YouTuber lostcanuck shows, the on-ice tradition of presenting and celebrating with the Cup has changed a lot since the Toronto Maple Leafs won it in 1949:
• Taking off the top half of the Cup to celebrate just is not as cool as lifting the entire thing over your head. (Could you fill the bottom portion with booze, though? That could be a gamechanger.)
• Nowadays, the Cup is brought to center ice by one of its handlers and placed on display with a nice NHL table skirt. Back in the day, it appears the league used to borrow one of your grandparents' card tables.
• The way some players used to lift the Cup is interesting, appearing as if they're displaying it to the crowd, almost sharing the moment with them. Today, it's grab both ends and thrust the bad boy to the heavens and try not to fall over. Looking at you, Zdeno Chara.
This compilation evokes memories of the best NHL playoff campaign they've ever had: "Cup Raise." In just under two months, lostcanuck will be able to add one more to this.
- Sports & Recreation
- Ice Hockey
- Gary Bettman