Peterborough native Mitchell Stephens will be bringing hockey’s holy grail home this week for a celebration.
The 24-year-old will bring the Stanley Cup to the city on Wednesday, Aug. 25, the City of Peterborough announced Monday.
It’s the second-straight championship for the forward who was part of back-to-back championships with the Tampa Bay Lightning. Their most recent title came in July after the club beat the Montreal Canadiens 4-1 in the best-of-seven championship.
Stephens was traded to the Detroit Red Wings on July 30 in exchange for a sixth-round pick in the 2022 NHL entry draft. He had signed a two-year extension with the Lightning in October 2020.
Last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Stephens and his teammates were unable to have their own day with the Stanley Cup after they defeated the Dallas Stars 4-2 in the final which was played in Edmonton in September 2020.
“I am excited to share this day with my family, friends and community to celebrate the greatest trophy in sports,” stated Stephens. “I hope to inspire Peterborough’s youth to pursue their dreams such as I did.
“I can’t wait to hoist the Stanley Cup alongside a city that I’ve called home.”
The city says the celebration will be physically distanced with regular COVID-19 protocols in place (mask, provide names and contact information for tracing purposes). Spectators will not be permitted to be close to Stephens or the trophy. No photo opportunities will be available.
A boat tour will begin at 5:30 p.m. at the Peterborough Lift Lock, moving south on the Trent Severn Canal to Little Lake and arriving at Del Crary Park approximately 6:30 p.m.
A short ceremony will recognize Stephens’s accomplishments, featuring remarks from Peterborough-Kawartha MPP Dave Smith, Peterborough County Warden J. Murray Jones, City deputy mayor Andrew Beamer and Coun. Lesley Parnell.
“We are excited to have the Stanley Cup back in Peterborough,” stated Mayor Diane Therrien. “Congratulations to Mitchell Stephens and the Tampa Bay Lightning.”
The Lightning drafted Stephens in the second round of the 2015 draft and he debuted in the 2019-2020 season. In 45 career NHL regular season games he has tallied three goals and four assists. In seven career playoff games he has one goal.
Prior to the NHL callup, he played minor hockey in Peterborough before joining the Toronto Marlboros of the Greater Toronto Hockey League at age 15. He went on to win a gold, silver and bronze medal at the world junior hockey championships with team Canada from 2014-2017 while also playing for the OHL’s Saginaw Spirit. He also played with the Lightning’s American Hockey League farm team, the Syracuse Crunch.