Phil Kessel brings Stanley Cup to Toronto SickKids Hospital
Former captain Phaneuf joins Kessel for Cup celebration
One year ago, the thought of Phil Kessel with the Stanley Cup in Toronto was pretty much unimaginable.
How times can change.
On Monday, the oft-criticized former Maple Leafs' star made good on his promise to bring the Cup to the city he called home for five years.
However, instead of a flashy news conference or a public event, Kessel made a quiet visit to a place he knew would appreciate it – Toronto's Hospital for Sick Children.
The 28-year-old spent the day Monday at SickKids sharing the Cup with children and their families.
SickKids was buzzing with <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/StanleyCup?src=hash">#StanleyCup</a> fever today! Thx for visiting our patients & families <a href="https://twitter.com/PKessel81">@PKessel81</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NHL?src=hash">#NHL</a> <a href="https://t.co/OMySknGsW3">pic.twitter.com/OMySknGsW3</a>—@SickKidsNews
When Kessel first announced in late June that he would be returning north of the border with the Cup, many thought the former Leaf was just taunting the Toronto fan base that hasn't celebrated its own championship since 1967.
<a href="https://twitter.com/PKessel81">@PKessel81</a> taking the cup back to Toronto is pretty much a big middle finger to the entire city—@abaxter14
phil kessel bringing the stanley cup to toronto is peak pettiness i love it.—@ronhextaII
However, the Madison, Wis., native now seems to have quashed any bad feelings about the move with the Toronto faithful.
Phil Kessel brought the cup to Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto... Class act—@Baboosh76
I've not been a <a href="https://twitter.com/PKessel81">@PKessel81</a> fan these last few yrs, but I tip my hat to him bringing <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/StanleyCup?src=hash">#StanleyCup</a> to <a href="https://twitter.com/sickkids">@sickkids</a>. Classy.—@leafsin2030
Phil Kessel takes the Cup back to Toronto and lets kids who are sick in the hospital have a great day with it. What a human.—@MikeDarnay
Kessel even had some extra company coming down for the big visit – former Maple Leafs captain Dion Phaneuf and actress wife Elisha Cuthbert.
Kessel amassed 394 points in 446 career regular-season games during his five-year tenure with Toronto before being traded to Pittsburgh last summer. After an unspectacular regular season, Kessel had 22 points in 24 playoff games as the Penguins won their fourth Stanley Cup in franchise history.