While the NHL has set up the hub city bubbles with a wide variety of activities for players, from basketball to cornhole, don’t be surprised if the Vegas Golden Knights spend a lot of time in their lounge or in their rooms.
“A lot of guys are playing video games – I mean, a lot,” said Mark Stone. “I’m excited to get the playoffs going though, because you can watch games from 10am until you go to bed.”
And when Stone and goalie Marc-Andre Fleury tune in, they’re likely to see a lot of themselves, as the stars of a new Apple commercial where the pair had a lot of fun with iPhones. The spot features Stone and Fleury using hockey tape to stick the phones to a variety of surfaces in order to film the commercial, following up on the spot that Toronto’s Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner put together not too long ago.
“When I first saw it, I thought there was no way they didn’t photoshop it,” Stone said. “Stickhandling with the phone taped to my stick; the quality of how it stays throughout the video is incredible.”
A hockey rink isn’t the safest place for a phone, but the Golden Knights duo thinks they only smashed one during filming.
“We taped one in (Fleury’s) glove and tried to shoot just under it, but it didn’t work,” Stone said. “One out of 10 stunts – that’s pretty good.”
Having fun is a running theme for the Golden Knights, who have definitely kept each other entertained – and on edge – with pranks in their brief history.
“Once one guy starts it, all hell breaks loose,” Stone said. “Someone’s skates were tied together last skate. I’m not going to say who it was but he might be sitting beside me right now (writer’s note: that would be Fleury). Last year when I got here, Jonathan Marchessault taped Flower’s sticks together and launched him on the ice before practice.”
Since Fleury is known to be a prankster, the star netminder noted that circumstances dictate caution when pulling one over on a teammate.
“We see each other every day so if you get caught, you know it’s coming back,” Fleury said. “So you have to be a little sneaky about it.”
Being in the bubble will likely only increase the shenanigans, but if Vegas can make another deep run, it will all be worth it. The Golden Knights earned a top-four slot in the West, meaning that they play in the round-robin instead of the qualifying round. That certainly has its advantages, as does the fact the Knights already feel like their sea-legs are back after the long layoff.
“We’ve had a long camp and we’re lucky in Vegas because everyone was skating early in June,” Fleury said. “The next three games are not playoffs yet, but they still matter because we want to have a good seeding.”
Vegas has already been to one Stanley Cup final and might have made another deep run last year had it not been for a controversial penalty call against San Jose that led to a league-wide rule change in the summer. With Fleury in net and Stone part of a very deep and impressive forward corps, the Golden Knights could certainly find themselves living the bubble life in Edmonton for a long time. Which means Fleury and Stone may be watching their new Apple commercial quite a few times.