The NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs are stressful. Tensions are high, competition is fierce and every nerve-wracking second leaves you on the edge of your seat.
The Anaheim Ducks were in Edmonton Sunday night for Game 3 of their second-round series against the Oilers. These division rivals were only separated by two points in the final regular-season standings. The Oilers jumped out to a 2-0 series lead by taking games 1 and 2 in Anaheim, so the Ducks were in desperation mode. While the game itself was quite dramatic, it was the pre-game ceremony that was particularly memorable.
Canadian country singer Brett Kissel was set to perform the United States’ national anthem. However, when he started singing, he realized there was a technical glitch and his mic was not working properly. He quickly reacted and raised his arms to the crowd, motioning for them to sing along.
Without hesitation, more than 18,000 fans in Rogers Place joined together to perform a beautiful rendition of the Star-Spangled Banner.
— NHL (@NHL) April 30, 2017
It says a lot about the sport of hockey and about the people of Edmonton to see such a touching tribute. This was in no way planned; the words were not on the jumbotron. It was simply the Oilers fans being respectful to the Ducks, to the other American teams and players in the league and to the people of the United States. It’s rare for something like this to occur, especially in the midst of a tense series, but it’s one of those moments that’s worth celebrating.
The Orange Crush crowd followed up its stirring performance of the USA national anthem with a heartfelt and powerful rendition of O Canada.
— BRETT KISSEL (@BrettKissel) April 30, 2017
The Oilers ended up losing the game by a final score of 6-3. Rickard Rakell scored just 25 seconds into the game, and the Ducks added two more goals in the first period. Edmonton scored a key goal before the first intermission and eventually tied it at 3-3. However, Ducks’ forward Chris Wagner scored shortly thereafter, and the Ducks added two more in the third.
Game 4, which will be held in Edmonton, is set for Wednesday night at 10:00pm EST.
Featured Image via NHL.com