Planes, trains and automobiles: On the road with the Golden Knights

Updated June 10, 2018 - 12:02 am

A reader suggested I write about what it was like to travel with the Golden Knights.

I replied that sports writers don’t travel with the teams they report on anymore. The players take a charter while we generally ride the middle seat on Southwest, because sports writers are notorious for neglecting to check in 24 hours in advance.

But because he asked for it, this is sort of what it was like to follow the Knights to the nation’s capital for Games 3 and 4 of the Stanley Cup Final. With the exception of the Uber driver from Serbia (who seemed agitated for some reason) none of the names have been changed (or ignored) to protect the innocent.

Day 1, Thursday

We take the train from Baltimore to D.C., and my first thoughts are scenes from old movies: “The Pride of the Yankees,” where Gary Cooper as Lou Gehrig takes a bite out Babe Ruth’s straw hat; “Double Indemnity,” where Fred MacMurray and Barbara Stanwyck conspire to murder the latter’s husband.

Most of the RJ crew clickety-clacks without incident, though Adam Hill witnesses a man being handcuffed on a Metro train after arriving in Washington.

The man said it was all Stanwyck’s idea.

Three stars

1. Metro Transit Police.

2. Singer at Ri’ Ra’ Irish pub in Georgetown who performed “Drunken Sailor” — aka the classic NFL Films’ ditty “Up She Rises” — in the manner Van Morrison might have done it.

3. Ri’ Ra’ chefs. They promised mac ’n’ cheese with Maryland crab. All we got was fish and chips.

Day 2, Friday

While writing off-day hockey stories from a Starbucks across the street (free Wi-Fi) from the National Archives, a woman rants about her companion’s unwillingness to add her iced vanilla latte, and “a nice dinner and hotel room” to his expense account.

I have read that when this happened to Hemingway, he finished the sentence. And that this is what made Hemingway great.

Three stars

1. Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., for responding posthaste to a text message.

2. The salmon BLT as served at the Tune Inn near Capitol Hill and as seen on “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.”

3. Uber driver from Serbia who refused to let us out until he revised history about the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, and how it lit the powder keg to World War I.

Day 3, Saturday

During a stroll on the National Mall, it occurs as we pay respects at the World War II and Vietnam Veterans memorials that some wars are worth fighting. While others, had they not been fought, would have allowed me to get to know my cousin John M. Chappey — wall panel 13W, line 110 — a little better.

Three stars

1. Lincoln Memorial.

2. Washington Monument.

3. Tie: Archie Bunker’s chair/half-smoke regular combo at Ben’s Chili Bowl after Game 3.

Day 4, Sunday

It rains all day, which seems the perfect occasion to check out Freddy’s barbecue joint, as seen on Netflix’s “House of Cards” — until we are told Freddy’s is an abandoned storefront in Baltimore and a TV soundstage.

Steve Carp suggests the Hill Country Barbecue Market instead. All (burnt) ends well, with the exception that no secret deals with congressmen are witnessed.

Three stars

1. Guy hunkered down in front of the fireplace sans shoes at coffee shop whose demeanor and posture say absolutely no way will he be getting up so we can use the free Wi-Fi to file off-day hockey stories.

2. Renegade taxi driver who makes us guess which African country he is from; and when we say Ghana, he shoots us this look and says: “Do I look like I’m from Ghana?”

3. Carp, for finally guessing Somalia.

Day 5, Monday

The RJ checking line is sopping up pizza and calzone at a place called Fuel near Capital One Arena, when a familiar face wearing a Golden Knights away jersey comes inside to chat.

Paul Sewald, the former Bishop Gorman star and current New York Mets relief pitcher, took Amtrak from the Big Apple to watch Game 4. He is with fellow Gorman grad Johnny Field, who now plays for the Tampa Bay Rays, and two pals from Las Vegas named Brad or Brandon. They seem happy to see us.

This is the opposite of what Bryce Harper will seem a couple of hours later when anybody with a press pass attempts to approach him for an interview at the hockey game.

Three stars

1. Paul Sewald, New York Mets.

2. Johnny Field, Tampa Bay Rays.

3. Two guys from Las Vegas named Brad or Brandon.

Day 6, Tuesday

Upon learning of our business in the nation’s capital, our Lyft driver, whose father was an American Marine and whose mother is from Panama, inquires if we went to a fight and a hockey game broke out.

Groans are stifled. “I know it’s an old joke,” she says. “But I’ve been waiting 20 years to say that.”

Three stars

1. Bellman at Crystal City Marriott who fits big square pegs — and Ed Graney’s giant valise that looks like something a roadie for U2 would be lugging around — into a tiny round hole in a Ford Focus baggage compartment.

2. Videographer Elaine Wilson’s T-shirt homage to Tom Brady.

3. Nonstop from Baltimore to Las Vegas.

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

ad-high_impact_4
Golden Knights Videos
HyperX Esports Arena hosts "VGK Twitch" event
Vegas Golden Knights players Alex Tuch, Colin Miller, Nate Schmidt and Erik Haula attended the “VGK Twitch” event at HyperX Esports Arena at the Luxor hotel-casino on Tuesday. The players battled fans and each other at Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and the members of the Blue Man Group made an appearance as well.
Golden Edge Mailbag: Nick Holden
Golden Knights defenseman Nick Holden takes your questions on our Golden Edge mailbag!
Golden Knights' McPhee, Gallant on trading Brad Hunt to the Wild
Vegas Golden Knights general manager George McPhee and head coach Gerard Gallant addressed trading Brad Hunt to the Minnesota Wild at a news conference on Tuesday.
Golden Edge: Golden Knights Fall for the Third Time in Five Games
The Vegas Golden Knights lose to the Minnesota Wild 4-2. Dave Schoen, Adam Hill, and Ben Gotz report from T-Mobile Arena.
Golden Knights after their loss to the Wild
Vegas Golden Knights head coach Gerard Gallant says the team needs to be tougher in certain areas and the players assess their loss to the Minnesota Wild.
Gallant: The Wild had our number last year
Head coach Gerard Gallant says the Minnesota Wild had the Golden Knights number last year. Tuch talks about the playoff hopes of the Golden Knights and Schmidt chimes in on team's tenacity.
Golden Edge: Golden Knights Put up Record Amount Shots but Fall Short - VIDEO
The Vegas Golden Knights lose to the Winnipeg Jets 4-1. In the second period the Knights put up a record number of shots on goal but still go back to the locker room down 2-0. David Schoen reports from Winnipeg.
Gallant: Knights played a 'good game' vs. Winnipeg
Gerard Gallant says the Knights played a good game in the loss to Winnipeg on Jan. 15, 2019. (David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Gallant on Golden Knights power play
Gerard Gallant talks about the Golden Knight power play vs. Winnipeg on Jan. 15, 2019. (David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Gerard Gallant on loss to Winnipeg
Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant talks about the team's loss to Winnipeg on Jan. 15, 2019. (David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Golden Edge Mailbag: Will Brandon Pirri be an official Knight? - VIDEO
Ben Gotz and Adam Hill go over the Golden Knights fans reactions to Jonathan Machessault not making the NHL all star roster and Brandon Pirri potentially joining the Knights.
Gerard Gallant on Winnipeg
Gerard Gallant talks about continuing to play good hockey in Winnipeg. (David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Gallant on facing Winnipeg
Gerard Gallant talks about trying to take 2 points in Winnipeg. (David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Golden Knights Win In Overtime Against Blackhawks - VIDEO
The Golden Knights win 4-3 in overtime against the Blackhawks with Shea Theodore scoring the game winning goal. Golden Knights beat writer David Schoen goes over the Knights comeback win.
Gallant on Carpenter goal
Gallant on win
Gallant on overturned goal
Gallant CHI 1
Theodore CHI
Golden Knights Win Streak Ends Against Sharks - VIDEO
The Golden Knights win streak ends after a loss against the San Jose Sharks. Golden Knights reporters David Schoen and Adam Hill go over the Knights giving up two goals in the third period and how the team will recover on the road.
Golden Knights React To Loss Against Sharks - VIDEO
The Golden Knights react to their 3-2 loss against the Sharks including Marc-Andre Fleury, Max Pacioretty and head coach Gerard Gallant.
Golden Edge: Knights beat Rangers for 7th straight win
The RJ's David Schoen and Adam Hill recap the Golden Knights' win over the New York Rangers on January 8, 2019.
CES 2019: VR Hockey Trainer Sense Arena - VIDEO
CES 2019 has a lot of VR options, but none quite as cool for Golden Knights fans as Sense Arena. Former NHL Jan Ludvig and Patrik Eliáš talk about the future benefits and possibilities of technology like this. Eliáš also talks about his experience at his first Golden Knights game this past Sunday when the knights faced off against his former team the New Jersey Devils.
Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant talks on Jan. 7
Gallant talked about forward Brandon Pirri being recalled, injuries and more.
Golden Edge Mailbag - January 7, 2019 - VIDEO
Reporters Ben Gotz and Adam Hill go over all your burning VGK questions and comments
Gallant says the Golden Knights need to keep pressing
Vegas Golden Knights head coach Gerard Gallant on how important it is that the team keep playing tough down the stretch as things as the race for the top in the Pacific Division remains close.
Golden Edge: Golden Knights Rally Behind Subban
The Vegas Golden Knights pick up their 6th win in a row scoring 3 goals to come back from a 2-0 New Jersey lead. Adam Hill, Ben Gotz, and Dave Schoen report from T-Mobile arena.
Golden Knights on their comeback victory over the the Devils
Vegas Golden Knights players reflect on their come-from-behind win over the New Jersey Devils. Max Pacioretty talks about the becoming a father for the fourth time and then playing.
UNLV hockey program aims for NCAA Division I status
As the hockey culture continues to grow in Las Vegas, UNLV looks to develop its hockey program and eventually reach NCAA division I status. Video produced by Heidi Fang
Schmidt 3rd periods 2
Schmidt 3rd periods
Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant talks on Jan. 5
Gallant talked about the team’s recent run of success in the third period, the schedule and more.
Golden Knights On Five Game Win Streak After Beating Ducks: Golden Edge - VIDEO
The Golden Knights are now on a five game winning streak after beating the Anaheim Ducks 3-2. Golden Knights reporter Adam Hill goes over the Knights win.
Golden Edge: Golden Knights Win with another Goal from Brandon Pirri
The Vegas Golden Knights defeat the LA Kings 2-0 with another goal from Brandon Pirri and shutout number 6 from Marc-Andre Fleury. David Schoen and Adam Hill repot from T-Mobile arena.
Pirri, Fleury on the Golden Knights shutout win over the Kings
Brandon Pirri and Marc-Andre Fleury discuss the team's play that led to the Vegas Golden Knights win over the L.A. Kings.
Golden Edge: Knights Win Big Against Coyotes
The Golden Knights defeat the Arizona Coyotes after scoring three goals in the third period and allowing one goal from a 5-on-3 power play. Golden Knights reporter Ben Gotz breaks down the highlights from the game.
Closing Out 2018 With The Golden Knights
With 2018 coming to a close, Golden Edge host Cassie Soto shares some of the highlights from the end of the Golden Knights inaugural season and the start of year two. While there were many big sports stories in 2018, none might be as historic as what the Golden Knights were able to accomplish in their first year of competition. The team joined the 1967-68 St. Louis Blues as the only professional baseball, basketball, football or hockey team to make it to the championship round. Although the Golden Knights fell short in their hunt to the hoisting the Stanley Cup, the team was able to unite the city of Las Vegas unlike anything ever before and for that, the community thanks them.
Golden Edge: Golden Knights fefeat Kings giving Subban his first win
The Vegas Golden Knights defeat the LA Kings 4-1 and Malcolm Subban gets his first win on the season reported by Ben Gotz and Adam Hill from Los Angeles.
Ryan Reaves describes the flavors in Training Day beer
Ryan Reaves talks about the flavor of Training Day, the new beer from 7Five Brewing that was launched at the PKWY Tavern on West Flamingo Road. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
2018: The Golden Year
The Golden Knights started off the year strong by making it to the Stanley Cup Finals and held many community to be closer with the fans.
Golden Knight Lee Orchard Discusses Career
Golden Knight Lee Orchard discusses his career and what he loves most about being part of an NHL team in Las Vegas.
Ryan Reaves describes his new beer
Golden Knights winger Ryan Reaves talks about his new beer from 7Five Brewing at a launch party at PKWY Tavern on West Flamingo Road. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Ryan Reaves visits tavern to launch his beer brand
Ryan Reaves visits the Parkway Tavern to sign autographs for fans and get reactions about his new beer called training day.
Golden Edge: Knights get back in the win column at home
After losing two games in overtime on the road, the Vegas Golden Knights returned home to score a victory over the Colorado Avalanche. David Schoen and Ben Gotz analyze the team's 2-1 victory in their final home game of 2018.
Fleury, Pirri and Stastny recap Golden Knights win over Avalanche
After their 2-1 win over the Colorado Avalanche, Marc-Andre Fleury, Brandon Pirri and Paul Stastny recap the team's performance.
Gallant says Golden Knights were recharged after 3 days off
Vegas Golden Knights head coach Gerard Gallant talks about the team's win over the Colorado Avalanche and says the time off helped the team perform better.
Golden Knights Suffer Second Consecutive Overtime Loss
The Golden Knights fell to the Kings 4-3 in overtime and will enter the holiday break on a two-game losing streak. Golden Edge reporters Adam Hill and Ben Gotz discuss the loss.
Golden Knights Owner Bill Foley Talks About First Season
Golden Knights Owner Bill Foley talks about the Knights phenomenal first season of the NHL and how they hope to continue the momentum this season.
Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant previews Islanders game
Gallant discussed William Carrier’s hot streak, shuffling his lines and more.
Gallant NY 4
Gallant NY 3
Gallant NY 2
Gallant NY 1
Gallant NJ 3
Gallant NJ 2
Gallant NJ 1
Golden Knights center Paul Stastny on rejoining the lineup
Golden Knights center Paul Stastny on rejoining the lineup. David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Golden Knights center Paul Stastny discusses his injury
Golden Knights center Paul Stastny discusses his injury. David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Knights center Paul Stastny discusses his return to the ice
Knights center Paul Stastny discusses his return to the ice. David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Deryk Engelland at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas
The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas was a new experience for Golden Knights defenseman Deryk Engelland on Wednesday night. He said he was looking forward to spending time with family and going for a skate, as well as lighting the Christmas tree for fans.
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like