Hockey Hall of Fame - Stanley Cup Journals: 2009, 17

Bill taking the Cup for a ride to the nearby Pro Hoops Academy where his oldest girls were attending a basketball camp. (Mike Bolt/HHOF)
Some players never win a Stanley Cup championship. Others, like Raymond Bourque and Lanny McDonald, are forced to wait until the end of their careers to enjoy the rewards of such a victory. For Bill Guerin, it was a long, agonizing 14-year wait between the Stanley Cup championship he won with the New Jersey Devils in 1994-95 and his contributions to the Pittsburgh Penguins' victory in 2009.

In between Stanley Cup celebrations were stops in Edmonton, Boston, Dallas, St. Louis, San Jose and Long Island. The much-travelled, highly valuable Guerin was in the right place at the right time. Call it synchronicity. Call it fate. Bill's overtime goal in Game Two of the Flyers' series, his second of the game, was a pivotal moment in the 'March of the Penguins.'

Bill stopped by the Stop & Shop to pick up a few items for his Stanley Cup party. (Mike Bolt/HHOF)
Bill, wife Kara and their children Grace, Kayla, Lexi and Liam, spend their summers in Oyster Bay on Long Island, and that is where the Guerins met up with the Stanley Cup on Friday, August 13. When it arrived, Liam immediately wanted to find his Dad's name engraved on the beautiful trophy, and within moments, was running his fingers over the spot, a space between Bruce Driver and Bobby Holik on that 1994-95 Devils' squad.

Bill packed the Cup in his car and took it to the nearby Pro Hoops Academy, where the oldest girls, Grace and Kayla, were attending a basketball camp. The Stanley Cup was then placed in a shopping cart as Bill picked up a few necessities at the Stop & Shop grocery store. The double-takes from shoppers were incredible — he swore that a few even challenged Linda Blair from her role in 'The Exorcist'!

Bill and his family sharing a moment with the Cup in Oyster Bay on Long Island. (Mike Bolt/HHOF)
The Institute of 3E (exercise, education and empowerment) in Huntington, New York is where Guerin trains for the National Hockey League season, and at 4:00PM, he stopped by to show instructors and clients alike the fruits of his work at the unique training facility.

Multi-tasking as a huge sundae dish is becoming a regular use for the Stanley Cup, and the Guerins made certain that they visited Gooseberry Grove for that purpose. Now, there have been some very fine sundaes made in the Stanley Cup, but none that could top this one. You name the flavour you favour, it was there. And no matter what topping you prefer, this sundae had it. Not surprisingly, it didn't last very long as the kids devoured the ice-cold creation.

Bill took the Cup to Richie's Barber Shop in Messina Market for a shave. (Mike Bolt/HHOF)
Visits to two firehalls preceded a stop on the beach to get a few pictures taken, then back to the house for the night.

Day Two started with a terrific breakfast at Oyster Bay's Harborside Deli. Bill ran into a wedding party and invited the groom, his best man and the groomsmen to have their pictures taken with the Stanley Cup. The groom insisted he would never forget Saturday, August 14, 2009 because of the Stanley Cup. Let's hope, for his sake, that he remembers the date for another reason, too!

Guerin took the Cup to Messina Market, then decided to visit Richie's Barber Shop. Now, the Stanley Cup has been involved in some close shaves (remember Brett Hull's goal in 1999?) but has never had as close a shave as this. Lathered up, shaved and finished with hot towels, neither the Cup nor Bill had anything resembling a playoff beard on August 14. In fact, their cheeks were as smooth as the babies' bums that occasionally are seated in the bowl of the Cup!

Bill and his family sharing a moment with the Stanley Cup along the beach in Oyster Bay on Long Island. (Mike Bolt/HHOF)
Back to the house, Bill and the family had more pictures taken. From 2:00 until 4:00, the Stanley Cup was a special guest at a kids' party held at the Shipwreck Tavern. The Guerin kids were joined by Matt Cooke and his family, Miroslav Satan and his kids and Doug Weight and his family at the unique restaurant where Captain 'Briney' Bay has many of his ocean treasures on display, along with creatures of the deep — sharks, moray eels and other exotic fish — as well as the restaurant's mascot, Davey Jones the parrot. Try as they might, they couldn't get Davey Jones to say, "Polly wants the Cup!"

While clothes shopping in Huntington, people continually stopped Bill to congratulate him and the Penguins on their accomplishment. Back at the house, the Guerins got ready for their Stanley Cup party. A limousine took them to Prime, a phenomenal restaurant on Huntington Harbor, where guests from California, Nashville and Edmonton joined the celebration. Bill's sister flew in from Brazil to celebrate with her brother! "Parabéns," she shouted when she saw Bill with the Stanley Cup.

Former teammates with the Islanders Bill Guerin and Doug Weight get their picture taken with the Cup at the Shipwreck Tavern. (Mike Bolt/HHOF)
Bill Guerin's celebration concluded with one final stop. A spur of the moment decision saw Bill walk the Stanley Cup into a local bar, and as you might imagine, the place exploded with excitement.

It had been a long wait between victories, but that made this celebration that much sweeter for Bill Guerin and the Stanley Cup.

* * *

Friday will be here before you know it, and when it arrives, the Stanley Cup Journal will visit Hal Gill and Mark Eaton. Mark your calendars!

* * *

Kevin Shea is the Editor of Publications and Online Features for the Hockey Hall of Fame. www.kevinsheahockey.com



All Photographs are property of the Hockey Hall of Fame or Getty Images and may not be reproduced without prior written consent. For more information regarding use of our photographs please contact us.