The Stanley Cup, the most coveted trophy in the NHL, is coming to Fresno in what just might be a “once in a lifetime opportunity” for those in the central San Joaquin Valley.
Nicknamed “The Holy Grail,” The Stanley Cup will be on display for fans to take a picture with (for free) when the Fresno Monsters take on the Ontario Avalanche on January 10 at Selland Arena. The Monsters made the announcement Thursday.
The Stanley Cup has a long tradition of traveling all over the world, with the trophy featured in parades and various ceremonies. In addition, players from the NHL championship team are allowed to bring the hardware back to their hometowns for a couple of days.
The Washington Capitals won the 2018 Stanley Cup.
And though none of the Capitals players are from Fresno, Monsters coach Kevin Kaminski used to play for Washington (1993-97) and worked with the NHL and Hockey Hall of Fame to coordinate The Stanley Cup’s arrival in Fresno.
“This is absolutely exciting news that Lord Stanley’s Cup is coming to Fresno,” Kaminski said. “It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity to see it and take a photo with a part of hockey history.
“I believe it’s not only a commodity for the die hard hockey fan but for the whole city to see it. It’s not called the holy grail for nothing. This is the hardest trophy to win in all of sports.”
This isn’t just a rare opportunity for Fresno.
In the 25 years that the Western States Hockey League has been around, this will mark only the second time the trophy will have been on display at a WSHL game. The last time occurred in 2012 with the Long Beach Bombers.
“I’ve personally seen it only once in the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto,” Kaminski said of The Stanley Cup. “I’m getting old. And since my old team the Washington Capitals won it last year — I think this time around I’m gonna have to hold it.
“Who knows.... it might be my only chance.”
Tickets to the Monsters game can be purchased at the Selland Arena box office (recommended) or by purchasing online. Group tickets are also available, starting at $10.