Alex Ovechkin has been enjoying the Stanley Cup in ways few people have ever enjoyed it. He carried it through Las Vegas like the Holy Grail in the hours following the Washington Capitals’ victory in Game 5 and, much like the way you’d have to imagine Bane would, returned the trophy to the people in Washington. It was a three-day, alcohol-fueled bender that would’ve made Nicolas Cage’s character in Leaving Las Vegas proud.
But is this truly the best time anyone has ever had with the Cup? Or is there a three-time champion and captain that had his own special time with the Cup that we are all forgetting?
Sidney Crosby won the Cup in 2009 and then back-to-back in 2016 and 2017, and I bet he and that Cup could tell you some stories about really partying, about really going hardcore with the Cup.
In a VICE Sports exclusive, I definitely and honestly sat down for a not at all made up interview with the three principals—Ovechkin, Crosby, and the Stanley Cup—so we can decide for ourselves who had the best time with the Stanley Cup.
VICE: Let’s start with you, Alex. You win your first Cup and you do it in Vegas. What was that like?
OVECHKIN: Incredible. I play hockey in a city that closes at, like, 9 PM on weekends so thank God we won in Vegas. We all piled onto buses after the game and immediately drove to a club because we were going to go so hard that night. All those screaming people, taking the Cup on stage, the music, the alcohol. I don’t know if it was the adrenalin, the beer, being overtired from fatigue or a combination of the three, but it created a high that I don’t think can ever be matched by a drug.
STANLEY CUP: I’m 125 years old so I just wanted to play slots, but that eddem stuff the kids are into was interesting. A little too loud, though.
VICE: Oh. What about you, Sid? Three Cups, so you probably had that feeling three times over, right?
CROSBY: Oh, for sure. When we won the Cup in 09 in Detroit, the boys were ready to go hard all night. So we got on our bus, went back to my hotel room, broke out the Monopoly board and played until about 2 AM. It got pretty crazy, too. But what it made it special was we used the Cup to roll the dice. A couple times the dice rolled off the board we had to roll it over again. It was a real rush. But when I won and went to bed, I imagine the feeling was similar to what Alex experienced in Vegas.
VICE: How much fun did you have bringing the Cup to the Washington Nationals game?
OVECHKIN: Getting to share the Cup with the players and fans was great because we were back from Vegas and we wanted to get the Cup in front of as many people as possible in the city because they went through this for just as long as we did, even longer if you think about it. And if there’s anyone that should get to see a championship trophy because they’d probably never see one, it’s the Nationals. The energy in the stadium when we had the Cup on the field is something I’ll never forget.
CROSBY: I have a similar story. We brought the Cup to PNC Park for a Pirates game and that was pretty cool. But to be honest, it wasn’t what I was expecting. I thought we were taking the Cup to PNC Bank, because that’s a good bank. They do good banking there and I wanted to take a moment to honor the tellers and employees at one of the branches because good interest rates and customer service mean a lot to me. Banking is hard work. So when we pulled into the stadium parking lot, I was like, “Is there a bank branch here? Because I want to see a vault.” But no. Still fun though.
VICE: How did the water fountains thing in Georgetown happen? Spontaneous?
OVECHKIN: Yeah, it’s like I said, we know what the fans have been through so we didn’t want to party the whole time in private. This is their Cup as much as our Cup. So yeah, we saw the fountains and I was like, “I want to splash around in there.” So we dove in, I did some pushups and everyone messed around and had fun.
STANLEY CUP: I smelled like the basement of a frat house up until that point so it was nice to take a bath.
VICE: What did you think of that, Sid?
CROSBY: I thought it was a little too dangerous for me. [laughs nervously] A fountain can be slippery and people can get hurt. I’m also pretty sure that if you jump into a public fountain, that’s trespassing, something I was taught not to do growing up. I got really scared when I saw Alex swimming in the fountain, because [Sid takes a second to compose himself, he’s shaking] I thought he might drown. I didn’t see him stretch so I was worried he could cramp and go under. But then he did pushups and I knew he was OK. That reminded me of when I did pushups with the Cup, one of my most cherished memories.
VICE: Alex, I have to say, you looked pretty woozy after that kegstand you did.
OVECHKIN: Oh man. That might’ve been the first moment after the Cup win where I realized maybe I needed a break. Partying in front of cameras is great but puking into the Cup after a kegstand might’ve been a bad look. But yeah, kegstands. Why not? I’m 32 and maybe I’m too old for that but you only live once and I didn’t get to win the Cup in my 20s so I’m cherishing every moment right now.
VICE: I’m guessing, Sid, that you never did a kegstand with the Cup.
CROSBY: [laughing] You got me. But I did do some serious drinking out of it.
VICE: Oh really?
CROSBY: After we won it in 2016, it had been a long time since the first Cup, so much like Alex, I wanted to savor it and not take it for granted. So I brought the Cup back to my place and had my trainer, Gary Roberts, load it up with that liquid gold. So once he topped it off, he lifted the Cup to my lips and I chugged that room temperature tap water as it dripped down my shirt. Gary put a special protein powder in there, too, so I was really feeling the effects when I finished it. I never felt so alive.
STANLEY CUP: That was the first time I ever wished I were dead.
VICE: What about when you were on Jimmy Fallon?
STANLEY CUP: That was the second time.
VICE: And when Ovi took you to meet Ivanka Trump?
STANLEY CUP: When she found out I was Canadian, things got awkward but Alex ran some interference so I could get out of there.
VICE: Alex—"We Are The Champions"—I'm sure people want to know, have you been waiting to sing that like this your whole life?
OVECHKIN: I love Queen and love that song and yeah, I always wanted to belt it out after winning the Cup. I’ll be singing it all summer so I hope everyone gets used to it.
VICE: Any "We Are The Champions" for you, Sid?
CROSBY: Oh, no way. I stayed away from "We Are The Champions" because I’m not big into the heavy metal rock and roll. A little too edgy for me. But you can be sure there are videos of me out there singing X Ambassadors, Imagine Dragons, stuff like that.
VICE: How drunk were you when that video of you grilling was taken?
OVECHKIN: If you saw any videos of me between Friday morning and Sunday night, rest assured my blood-alcohol level could have taken down a rhino. At that point, I just needed some food in my body because I drank most of my meals that weekend.
VICE: Now grilling, that’s something you can respect, right, Sid?
CROSBY: I thought the flame in Alex’s video was a little too high for me. When I grill, I like to use the Three S System—Safety, Sobriety, and Slamming Good Vegan Burgers. Some people like to add a touch of pepper to their vegan burgers but that’s a little too spicy for me. When I’m feeling crazy I’ll put some light mayo on there. I had spicy brown mustard once but it burned my mouth.
VICE: Finally, Alex, we all saw the photos, so what was it like sharing a bed with the Stanley Cup?
OVECHKIN: It was the most wonderful night of my life. The love I felt and the love we shared is something I previously thought impossible between a man and inanimate object. To look into the Cup’s eyes—well, I guess I was looking at my reflection in the Cup, so technically, they were my eyes—was like peering into an angel’s soul.
STANLEY CUP: It meant just as much to me, Alex.
VICE: Sid, three championships for you, so I imagine you had similar nights.
CROSBY: To be honest, I respect the Cup so much that every time I won it, I let it sleep in my bed and I slept on the couch. I believe in boundaries and I didn’t want to risk ruining what we have as friends.
OVECHKIN: Christ, man.
VICE: What is wrong with you?
STANLEY CUP: You knew I wanted to take us to the next level! We were together two years and you never shared a bed with me! Sometimes you have to take risks so a relationship can grow into something better!
CROSBY: Hey, I was a gentleman. I made you breakfast in the morning. Waffles and bacon.
VICE: Were the waffles gluten-free?
OVECHKIN: And was it turkey bacon?
STANLEY CUP: I’m so happy that we are finally together.
OVECHKIN: Me too.
[Ovechkin passionately kisses the Cup]
[Crosby covers his eyes with his hands]