Phil Kessel may not look like the kind of guy who had any business playing 17 seasons in the NHL, but the veteran forward has managed to do exactly that over the course of a lengthy career where he’s been a member of five different teams.
Kessel was scooped up by the Bruins with the fifth overall pick in the 2006 NHL Draft and would spend three years in Boston before being traded to the Maple Leafs.
His six-year stint in Toronto saw him become one of the many players who’ve found themselves in the crosshairs of the city’s notoriously critical hockey media, and when he was traded to the Penguins in 2015, Toronto Sun columnist Steven Simmonds wrote an infamous column featuring a debunked story about Kessel stopping by a hot dog stand every single afternoon to get his fix.
While Kessel may not have the healthiest diet in the world, it didn’t prevent him from being a solid contributor for a Pittsburgh squad that won two consecutive Stanley Cups in 2016 and 2017, and he trolled Simmonds by filling the trophy’s bowl with hot dogs in the wake of his second win.
Kessel didn’t see much action with the Golden Knights over the course of a Stanley Cup Playoffs run that ended with Las Vegas hoisting the trophy for the first time in franchise history with a 9-3 win over the Panthers in Game 5 on Tuesday night, but he still earned the right to say he’s now a three-time Stanley Cup champion.
Following the contest, Kessel chatted with Mike Stephens and pounced on the chance to troll the Toronto media yet again by saying, “Takes me back to my Toronto days. You guys said I couldn’t win, and now I’m a three-time champ. Remember that.”
It’s hard to blame him for taking yet another victory lap at their expense.