Former NHL star Jeremy Roenick puts down ultimate hockey hot lap

In the manner of Wonder Woman’s bracelets and ill-timed parade plans, hockey hot laps before practice have become a thing during the Stanley Cup playoffs. But the ultimate ones probably transpired Wednesday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Former goal-scoring whiz and self-avowed thrill-seeker Jeremy Roenick climbed behind the wheel of a race car on the off day before Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final between the Washington Capitals and Golden Knights. After shakedown laps, the NBC hockey analyst ripped around the 1.5-mile oval at top speed, at least for a NASCAR Racing Experience car.

Somebody said it was 165 mph. It was probably more like 150 and change, because that’s about as fast as one of those cars will go.

Roenick’s pace at LVMS would have made Yvan Cournoyer and the “Flying Frenchmen” of Montreal look as if they were skating in quicksand.

“This is the most incredible (expletive) thing I’ve ever done,” Roenick shouted into his radio as he drifted toward the wall heading into Turn 1 and set off the rev limiter. Round and round he went, and then Las Vegas native and real-life NASCAR racer Brendan Gaughan drove onto the track to rattle his cage a bit, as the late Dale Earnhardt would have put it.

“This was the hottest lap done I’ve ever done,” Roenick, 48, said after wriggling out of his borrowed NBC firesuit and slapping a cap adorned with South Point 400 logos onto his head. The first race in the NASCAR playoffs is Sept. 16 at LVMS, and it just so happens NBC will televise.

”I’ve flown in an F-16, I’ve jumped off the Stratosphere, I’ve jumped on alligators, I’ve caught rattlesnakes. This made my heart race more than anything,” added the former hockey star, who scored 513 career goals over 20 NHL seasons. “I’m a speed guy. I used to have a Porsche twin turbo and I ended up selling it (because) I was getting too many tickets. So this stuff (legal speeding) does not bother me.”

Season on the brink

Though an asphalt-blistering sun was beating down hard on Roenick, you got the impression he would have been willing to talk about legal speeding all day. He also had to know a Golden Knights question was coming after Vegas’ Stanley Cup championship hopes nearly were impeached in the nation’s capital.

Three straight victories by D.C.’s native hockey sons have pushed the upstart Knights to the brink of elimination in Game 5 Thursday.

“The Knights have been playing so hard for so long, and I think the Washington Capitals found a little glitch in their system. And that’s playing really strong D and being very focused on playing the players,” Roenick said about Washington finding a higher gear and Vegas spinning its wheels.

The Capitals’ strength and physical presence has had much the same effect on Knights’ skaters as rev limiters have on race cars, Roenick suggested.

“Where they (usually) were open, they’re not open anymore,” he said. “Mentally that’s tiring, physically that’s tiring. This is the first time all year where this team really looks lethargic and almost questioning themselves. There is no tomorrow. The fact they have to get it done (now) is gonna cause a little bit of nerves, a little bit of anxiety.”

Roenick’s advice to the Knights is to put the hammer down, turn left, have fun. Check that: that was his advice to himself on Wednesday. But putting the hammer down and having fun isn’t a bad place to start when tasked with climbing out a 3-1 hole at this late date.

“Nobody expected you to be here,” Roenick said of the expansion team that until now has turned the NHL upside down, like one of those “big ones” at Daytona or Talladega Superspeedway in Alabama does to race cars. “Go out and throw everything on the table. Play as physical and as fast as you can. If (you) get a couple of breaks, it could be a different story.”

If the Knights get a couple of breaks and climb out of this hole and come all the way back to erase a 3-1 deficit —which no hockey team has done in 76 years — it will be like Jeremy Roenick shouting into his radio after setting off the rev limiter at the track on Wednesday.

It’ll be the most incredible (expletive) thing they’ve ever done.

More Golden Knights: Follow all of our Golden Knights coverage online at reviewjournal.com/GoldenKnights and @HockeyinVegas on Twitter.

Contact Ron Kantowski at rkantowski@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0352. Follow @ronkantowski on Twitter.

ad-high_impact_4
Golden Knights Videos
Golden Edge Knights Singing The Blues After Loss To St. Louis
Golden Knights beat reporter David Schoen and Adam Hill go over the Knights loss to the St. Louis Blues.
Golden Knights Gallant on the team's 4-1 loss to the Blues
Vegas Golden Knights head coach Gerard Gallant discusses the team's 4-1 loss to the St. Louis Blues and says what kind of impact he expects Nate Schmidt to make upon his return.
Coach Gerard Gallant Speaks After Morning Skate
Before playing the St. Louis Blues tonight Gerard Gallant speaks with the media after the Golden Knights morning skate at City National Arena | November 16, 2018.
Coach Gallant Speaks with the Media After Practice
City National Arena | November 15, 2018.
Golden Edge: Fleury Shuts Out Anaheim
Vegas Golden Knights beat the Anaheim Ducks 5-0. Marc-Andre Fleury gets his third shutout on the season in his shiny new pads. Adam Hill, Dave Schoen, and Ben Gotz report from T-Mobile Arena.
Gallant on the Golden Knights win over the Ducks
Gerard Gallant discusses how key the home victory over the Anaheim Ducks was for the Vegas Golden Knights.
Golden Knights after their 5-0 win over the Anaheim Ducks
Vegas Golden Knights players talk about the 5-0 win on their home ice over the Anaheim Ducks.
Gerard Gallant On Haula And Stastny Status
Golden Knights head coach Gerard Gallants speaks after practice about the status of Erik Haula and Paul Stastny.
Golden Edge: Alex Tuch Interview
Adam Hill and Ben Gotz interview Golden Knights forward Alex Tuch.
Golden Edge Mailbag With Alex Tuch
Golden Knights' Alex Tuch is LIVE in-studio for our VGK Mailbag with reporters Ben Gotz and Adam Hill!
Golden Edge: November 12 Practice
Ben Gotz and David Schoen discuss Nate Schmidt's return to practice, Gallant's absence, and Erik Haula's injury.
Nate Schmidt On Suspension
Golden Knights Defenseman Nate Schmidt talks about his suspension.
Golden Edge: Knights Coming Home After Loss To Boston
Golden Knights beat writer David Schoen goes over the Knights loss to the Boston Bruins.
Golden Edge: Pacioretty makes his return to Montreal
Max Pacioretty makes his return to Montreal, but it is former Golden Knight Tomas Tatar who scores the game winner for the Canadiens defeating the Knights 5-4. David Schoen reports from Montreal.
Golden Edge: Knights Beat Senators On The Road
Golden Knights beat reporter David Schoen goes over the Golden Knights win against the Senators.
Knights defenseman Nate Schmidt discusses his suspension
Golden Knights defenseman Nate Schmidt discusses his suspension after practice in Ottawa (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Gallant on Toronto loss
Gallant on Pacioretty
Gallant on how season has gone
Pacioretty on possible return
Golden Edge: Knights Shutout the Hurricanes
The Golden Knights defeat Carolina 3-0, with Marc-Andre Fleury marking his 50th career shutout. Adam Hill and Ed Graney report from T-Mobile Arena.
Marc-Andre Fleury and William Carrier on the Knights Win Over Carolina
November 3, 2018 at T-Mobile Arena.
Coach Gallant Presser
Gerard Gallant speaks after the Knights defeat Carolina 3-0 at T-Mobile Arena November 3, 2018.
Golden Edge: Knights Feeling Blue After Loss In St. Louis
Golden Knights beat reporter David Schoen goes over the Knights 5-3 loss to the St. Louis Blues.
Gallant and Marchessault on Perron
Coach Gerard Gallant and Golden Knights Jonathan Marchessault comment on former Knights player David Perron (Dave Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Coach Gerard Gallant on former Knights player David Perron
Coach Gerard Gallant on former Knights player David Perron (Dave Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Marchessault on Perron
Gallant on consistency after a loss to the Nashville Predators
Coach Gerard Gallant says the Golden Knights are playing well in stretches, but consistency has been a problem. (David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Fleury on commercial
Marc-Andre Fleury talks about a commercial that features him in disguise as Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Fleury on wig
Marc-Andre Fleury puts on a blond wig at the end of practice to get some laughs.
Golden Edge: Knights Fall To Predators
Golden Knights beat reporter David Schoen goes over the Knights 4-1 loss to the Nashville Predators.
Golden Edge Mailbag - October 30, 2018
Adam Hill and Ben Gotz answer your burning questions about the Golden Knights.
Golden Edge: Marchessault Hits Penalty Shot in OT
The Golden Knights defeat the Ottawa Senators 4-3 in overtime. Ben Gotz, Adam Hill, and David Schoen report from T-Mobile Arena.
Gallant says team's tenacity led to OT win over the Senators
Vegas Golden Knights head coach Gerard Gallant discusses the Golden Knights win over the Ottawa Senators in overtime and how Ryan Reaves and Alex Tuch's contributions helped.
Golden Knights talk OT win, ready for road games
The Vegas Golden Knights talk about winning in overtime against the Ottawa Senators and how they will carry over that momentum on their upcoming road games.
Golden Edge: Knights Fall To Tampa, Pacioretty Exits Game
Adam Hill, Ben Gotz and David Schoen go over the Knights loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Golden Knights locker room post following loss to Lightning
The Vegas Golden Knights agreed following their loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning that they need to play more aggressive and be more consistent throughout the game to come out victorious.
VGS themed games from AGS at G2E Global Gaming Expo
A Golden Knights-themed slot machine was on display Tuesday at the G2E Global Gaming Expo as AGS showed two products that came out of a 3-year contract with the Knights. A video roulette game featuring a Knights helmet and an enormous slot machine were on the floor along with Knights cheerleaders, the Drumbots and Chance, the Knights' mascot. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Golden Knights talk after practice
Marc-Andre Fleury, Max Pacioretty and Cody Eakin in the locker room on Wed. October 3, 2018.
Vegas Golden Knights show support at blood drive
Members of the Vegas Golden Knights NHL team showed up for a community blood drive on the first anniversary of the Las Vegas shooting, Oct. 1, 2018. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Nevada Task Force One Cheers Golden Knights
Nevada Task Force One Cheers Golden Knights
Lucas Elvenes is ranked as one of the Golden Knights' top prospects
Lucas Elvenes is ranked as one of the Golden Knights' top prospects after a breakout season in Sweden. He slid to the fifth round in the 2017 draft after being projected to be selected much higher. “I wasn’t happy about being a fifth-rounder. But it was good for me, too, because I didn’t have so much pressure when I came here," Elvenes said. Elvenes posted five goals and 16 points in 28 games while playing in the top league in Sweden. The Knights signed Elvenes to a three-year, entry-level contract in June.
Golden Knights rookie camp - Day 2
The Golden Knights held their second day of rookie camp at City Arena in Las Vegas. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like