“It was great,” he said. “Most of our plane rides during the season we’re getting ready for the upcoming game. This five-hour flight wasn’t the case. We had the Stanley Cup on the flight with us. We could truly relax and enjoy the accomplishment that we did.”
The silvery symbol of the NHL champions will make many more journeys. Each player gets to keep it for at least one day. Thomas plans to take it to Flint, Mich., the blue-collar town about 70 miles northwest of Detroit where he was born. He’ll show it to family and friends he hasn’t seen in a while.
“I’ve been busy,” he said, “trying to accomplish some goals.”
He already has the Conn Smythe Trophy as the MVP of the postseason, and could add his second Vezina Trophy, which goes to the NHL’s best goalie, next Wednesday.
But before the players start touring with their hard-earned hardware, they had more immediate needs.
“I need a nap,” Thornton said, “I haven’t slept.”
Associated Press writers Jay Lindsay and Mark Pratt and AP freelancer Ken Powtak contributed to this report.
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