Wesley's Cup runneth over

AL STRACHAN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 7:55 AM ET

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Carolina Hurricanes defenceman Glen Wesley handled the winning of the Stanley Cup the way he has handled the rest of his career -- with consummate class.

Captain Rod Brind'Amour was the first to get the Cup, as tradition dictates, but the first teammate he handed it to was Wesley.

"Roddy told me he was giving it to me next," Wesley said, "but it's an incredible feeling, I guess to wait 18 years and be able to experience it.

"You know, it was never, never about me. I truly believe that.

"It was about every guy in the locker room and it wasn't about one individual.

"It was about Roddy's leadership. It was about Bret Hedican, Doug Weight who have never experienced it and played over 100 games each in the playoffs."

But anyone who knows Wesley, another former Maple Leaf finally able to hoist a Cup, was hoping he'd get a chance to realize his dream.

"It's incredible," he said. "I still can't believe it. It honestly feels like a dream to me, Just throughout the whole afternoon, I couldn't sleep, just thinking about preparing for Game 7."

It wasn't only Wesley's longevity in the National Hockey League that made him a sentimental favourite, it was the fact that he played with this team when it was in Hartford.

"It was a longer road, coming from Greensboro with 6,000, 7,000 people in the stands," he said. "This year was just an incredible ride right from the start of the season."

A lot of people counted us out tonight, and I think that just shows how much character and resilience we have in that locker room for guys to be able to bounce back after really stinking up the joint in Game 6.

"In Game 7 in our building, there was no way we were going to lose. No way. Every single guy in the locker room felt that way and there was never a doubt. Never a doubt in anybody's mind."


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