A broken helmet. A pair of skates. The stick that scored the winning goal.
These are just some of the items the St. Louis Blues are donating to the Hockey Hall of Fame as part of a new display honouring their first Stanley Cup win.
According to Dave Stubbs of NHL.com, the equipment — as well as pucks and photos from the Stanley Cup Final — will be on display for a full year, until a new champion is crowned next June.
The most notable item in the collection might be playoff MVP Ryan O’Reilly’s helmet, because it almost didn’t survive the post-game celebration.
“It got absolutely destroyed during the postgame celebration,” Blues equipment manager Joel Farnsworth told Stubbs. “A few of us remember seeing bits and pieces of it on the ice. When we got home, we thought, ‘What better way to show the exuberance of the celebration, and even reflect our entire season, than with a helmet that had been shredded?'”
Other items being donated include:
• Goalie Jordan Binnington’s catching glove, which he wore in the Western Conference Final and Stanley Cup Final.
• Captain Alex Pietrangelo’s gloves and the stick he used to score the Cup winning goal.
• Forward Vladimir Tarasenko’s skates.
• Defenceman Jay Bouwmeester’s jersey.
Like O’Reilly’s helmet, Pietrangelo’s stick almost didn’t make it to the Hall either because it was chipped during his next shift.
Luckily assistant equipment manager Rich Matthews was able to save it from being lost to history.
“[Pietrangelo] scored what ended up being the game-winner, then he cracked his stick on his next shift,” Farnsworth told Stubbs. “Rich, who spent 17 seasons with the New Jersey Devils before he came to us in St. Louis a couple years ago, has a whole lot more experience in a Stanley Cup Final than me. Pretty quick thinking on his part — he grabbed a Sharpie and put a little mark on the stick, nothing overly noticeable, but he wanted to make sure that one didn’t get lost in the shuffle.”
Farnsworth added he was honoured to play a small part in assembling a shrine to the first championship in Blues history, and he is looking forward to seeing it when the Blues visit the Maple Leafs next season.
“We have a pretty incredible history as an organization, considering we had never won anything,” Farnsworth said. “The roster of players and Hall of Famers who played at least some time here… the history of the organization is incredible. It’s cool to finally have this moment for the franchise.”