The Pittsburgh Penguins won the Stanley Cup at the end of last season, and during the ceremony in which hockey's holy grail was awarded. captain Sidney Crosby handed the cup off first to veteran defenseman Trevor Daley.
While the moment may have seemed significant, we had no idea just how much it meant to both the player and his team until general manager Jim Rutherford shared the story behind the moment.
Earlier in the playoffs, Trevor had gotten the difficult news that his mother didn’t have much time left. He asked me if he could take a quick trip home to see her. Any time one of my players is struggling with a serious family issue, I give them time to deal with the situation — even if it means missing a game.
So Trevor went home to see his mother. When he returned to Pittsburgh a few days later, I asked him how she was doing. He told me what she had said to him right before he had to leave, and it gave me goosebumps.
“Don’t worry,” she said. “I’ll be here to watch you lift the Stanley Cup.”
When the Cup was awarded to the Penguins, Rutherford admits that all he could think of was Trudy Daley, and he could not have been happier when Crosby handed the Cup over to Daley, with his mother's promise fulfilled.
Unfortunately Trudy would lose her battle with cancer shortly after watching her son win the Stanley Cup, but we hope she took great comfort watching her son achieve his dream before her passing.