Toronto transit users on their snowy Monday morning commute had their day brightened when discovering they had an opportunity to share a subway car with one of sports most-recognized trophies — the Stanley Cup.
The lucky subway riders also bumped into Stanley Cup Champion Tomas Kaberle, who rode along with the Cup in a move promoting the upcoming NHL All-Star Game set to be held in the city the first week of February.
"You don’t get to see it too often. They were shocked. You could see the excitement in their eyes. I’m proud to be here. It’s nice to be around the Cup," Kaberle said in a statement released by the NHL.
Now arriving at… Union Station 🚇
Tomas Kaberle rode the TTC with the @StanleyCup to commemorate 2024 @NHL All-Star in Toronto, with our partners @Rogers! #NHLAlumni | #RogersNHLAllStar pic.twitter.com/XF6oWyseXG
— NHL Alumni (@NHLAlumni) January 22, 2024
Kaberle says he didn't have to think twice when asked to accompany the Stanley Cup on its unconventional journey.
The last time Kaberle says he laid hands on the hockey trophy was back in 2011 when he had his day with the Stanley Cup in Velka Dobra, a small village of about 1,500 people where he grew up in Czechia.
Kaberle, who played 878 games for the Maple Leafs from 1998-2011, won the cup alongside the Boston Bruins in 2011.
“A lot of good memories seeing the Cup again,” said Kaberle at the press event.
Upon arriving at Union Station, the NHL alum and the world-famous Cup were greeted with a red carpet ceremony attended by local politicians and other Hockey Canada representatives.
"We are a hockey city, we love hockey so it’s exciting. What a great surprise for fans. People just went, 'Woah this is the Stanley Cup in Toronto in Union Station, wow," said Toronto Mayor Olivia Chow, who was also in attendance.
NHL 2024 All-Star Game
The All-Star Weekend, which runs from Feb. 1-3 at Scotiabank Arena, is set to have completely new look this year, according to an update by the NHL.
Celebrities will be paired with captains for the Tim Hortons NHL All-Star Player Draft (6 p.m. ET; SN, ESPN). They will pick the four teams of 11 players (nine skaters, two goalies) for the NHL All-Star Game.
The four celebrity team captains announced last week include superstar Justin Bieber, comedian Will Arnett, Calgary pop singer Tate McRae and crooner Michael Bublé.
Fans that missed bumping into the Stanley Cup on the TTC have an opportunity to get up close and personal with the Cup at the Hyundai NHL Fan Fair from Feb. 1-4 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.