Saturday night, the Washington Capitals had longtime host of Wheel of Fortune, Pat Sajak, announce the starting lineups before Game Three of the Stanley Cup Final. Beyond Wonder Woman, Sajak is arguably the team’s most famous fan.
Despite promises from Ted Leonsis that “the game will start on time” and that the “pre-game and game entertainment” would be snappy, Sajak held court for several minutes before introducing the players, talking about his experience as a Caps season-ticket holder.
Here are Sajak’s opening remarks.
Pat Sajak: Thank you, Wes. You’re the best.
Are you as excited as I am? I am here in large measure because my family and I have had season tickets for 13 seasons now. We sit right down here on the glass. Be sure to come down and say hello – if you can’t get past our highly-trained security detail.
In those 13 years, we have seen great teams, great players, great moments. And we have seen triumph and we have also seen disappointment. This season, this team, this playoff run, has surpassed it all.
So let’s win three more and hoist the Cup. What do you think?
Now, you folks are going to hear some booing now. That’s the tradition when you introduce the visiting team. Before you boo in earnest, I just want to say this playoff series so far has been just breathtaking and we have enjoyed every minute of it. These are two great teams.
Let’s meet the starting lineups.
Sajak was gregarious, authentic, and entertaining, but there was one person who was not impressed: Alex Ovechkin.
Ovechkin was captured by NBC Sports cameras with his head down on the bench, too focused to care about literally anything else.
The starting lineups were fascinating because after each player was announced, the jumbotron had their name appear on a Wheel of Fortune graphic.
Before Braden Holtby was announced, Sajak even added a flourish about his phenomenal save in Game Two.
“I’ve seen this save 50 times and I still don’t believe it… in goal, his eighth season, number seventy: Braden Holtby,” Sajak said.
The Vegas Golden Knights were roundly booed during Sajak’s announcing of the starting lineup. But one player got loud, albeit delayed cheers due to a sound delay: Nate Schmidt.
It’s unknown if the Caps will do anything special before Game Four, but it was nice to see the team honor one of the team’s longtime supporters.
we’d like to buy a vowel pic.twitter.com/SbgRP258dc
— NHL on NBC (@NHLonNBCSports) June 3, 2018
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