Once Upon a Time in a far away desert city, twenty-three Golden Knights set out to do something no one had done before them.
Long ago there was a city which had never had an army to love, no heroes to adore, and no warriors to call legends. The wonderful City of Las Vegas had a lot, but not a great sports army.
But then there was a wise man called Bill Foley. He was a man who saw potential in the golden city. A potential involving pucks, sticks and hard hits.
Foley persuaded the kings of the other thirty hockey realms in the nation to allow him to rise a brand new kingdom in the middle of the desert. To do so, he should only choose the poorest knights from the other realms.
But he fooled them all.
He chose George McPhee as the hand of the king, and together they chose their men wisely. They might not have been able to pick the knights with the shiniest armors or sharpest swords, but they picked the knights with the biggest hearts.
William Karlsson from the Kingdom of Columbus.
James Neal from the Great Land of Nashville.
Marc-André Fleury from the Powerful Realm of Pittsburgh.
Jonathan Marchessault from the Deep Moats of Florida.
David Perron from the Blue Kingdom of St. Louis.
Young Alex Tuch from Minnesota’s Wooded Empire.
The home town hero Deryk Engelland from the burning flames of Calgary.
And a series of other unproven ice warriors from around the land. To lead these men, they chose the former Florida general Gerard Gallant as their commander.
Together, these men became a team of knights with one simple thing in common: They had all been rejected from other kingdoms, all looking for revenge. An army of knights with big hearts and nothing to lose. Twenty-three golden Knights.
They set out with a shiny goal of getting into the almost unintrudable playoff castle.
«It’s not possible», they said. «It will never happen», they said. «A poker pro has a better chance of hitting a straight flush on the river», they said.
But then the Golden Knights started winning. And winning. And winning some more. And they didn’t stop until they had conquered the entire Pacific region – and retrieved the key for the playoff castle.
But their quest was far from over, because a sweeter prize was waiting in the highest tower of the Stanley Cup castle. A 34 pound heavy princess of silver. However, they had to overcome three difficult obstacles to get to the top.
First, there was the Kings of Los Angeles. They got knocked in the moat.
Second, there was the Golden State of San José. They put up a fight, but couldn’t overcome the magnificent Fleury.
Third and last, there was the Empire of Winnipeg. A hockey realm like no other, but not even they could stop the marching Golden Knights.
230 days after starting their magnificent journey, the twenty-three Golden Knights had made it all the way to the top of the Stanley Cup castle.
No inaugural hockey realm has ever had a year like this, and nobody is doubting the Golden Knights no more. The 30 other hockey kings are speechless, all pondering how they didn’t see the talent they let go. Years from now, no one will probably even believe this insane fairy tale of two dusins Golden Knights who took down the entire Nation in only one year.
Now, only the Capitol’s Greatest Men or Tampa Bay’s Tough Warriors will stand in the way between the Golden Knights and the precious Silver Princess. Four more victories and they get to kiss her, lift her proudly over their head, and kick off the greatest celebration Sin City has ever seen.
WRITTEN BY MATTIS HOLT, SPORTS WRITER AND VALUELIVE SHOW HOST
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