For longtime Edmonton Oilers fan Cam Herron, the 2022-2023 NHL season feels like it could finally be the year the team recaptures the cup.
“I think we’ve earned our dues and we’re back in there with (Connor) McDavid and (Leon) Draisaitl, so it’s looking good,” says Herron.
The Oilers downed the L.A. Kings last week to move to round two and will face off against the Las Vegas Golden Knights on Wednesday to kick off the new series.
“I was just looking up flights to Vegas, they’re pretty pricey this weekend, but still considering it,” smiles Herron.
One south island pub also pulling for the Oilers is the 17 Mile House Pub in Sooke. They are decidedly against the Toronto Maple Leafs and, in 2022, introduced one of their more memorable promotions that is still on the menu.
“Our biggest one is the Leaf’s poutine for $67,” says General Manager Ken Whitaker.
“It’s gone pretty viral and we get a lot of feedback from it, mostly negative from all the Leaf fans, but we have a good time with it.”
One place where Leaf fans will be welcomed is the 5th Street Bar & Grill, which was abuzz for game six of the series against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
“It’s been insane in here, the roof almost flew off this place when they scored that goal,” says Assistant Manager Heather Radloff.
“It was insane. We’ve had just people with jerseys, just everyone’s been having the best time.”
While Canadian hockey fans might get a little territorial in their rivalries, the chance of a Canadian team taking home the Stanley Cup will certainly pique the interest of fans from other teams.
“There hasn’t been a Canadian team winning a Stanley Cup since 1993, there hasn’t been an all-Canadian match-up since 1989,” says “Donnie and Dhali – The Team” co-host Don Taylor.
“So it falls in the ‘it’s about time’ category.”
“It’s time we had an all-Canadian final, and somebody hosted the cup in Canada,” says Herron.
The Leafs take on the Florida Panthers Tuesday night, while the Oilers tackle Vegas on Wednesday.