Nathan MacKinnon has a favorite podcast to appear on. It’s called “The High Button Podcast” and it’s hosted by a friend of his from Nova Scotia, Justin Belanger. The Avalanche superstar sat down for about an hour with Belanger for his latest pod, which you can listen to in full by clicking here. You can also watch the whole interview on YouTube by clicking here.
This is a more relaxed Nate, hanging out back home with a buddy, talking about winning a Stanley Cup.
On actually winning the damn thing: “I’m still kind of digesting it, that it actually happened.”
On the team’s mentality all season: “It was win or bust. If we didn’t win, it was a failure. But it was a really positive group. Good energy around the team.”
After losing Game 5 in the Finals against Tampa Bay, at home with the Cup in the building: “That was a tough one man. The Cup’s in the building. Just heartbreaking. But you have to move on quickly. I always ride the bike after every game, and when I was riding the bike after Game 5 I just just like, ‘man, this is awful.’ Like, ‘we should be celebrating the Cup right now and I’m on a bike.’ Just miserable man, just miserable. Things were going through my head, like rage, sadness, my god. I talked to Sid (Crosby) the next day. They were up 3-1 to San Jose in 2016 and lost Game 5 at home. You gotta move on quick. You have a day between each game. They ended up winning.”
On a team meeting the night before Game 6: “We had an awesome team meeting. (Andrew) Cogliano said a lot, and it was inspiring, hearing a guy like that talk. That’s hard, getting up in front of 25 men and speaking from the heart. That was what was cool about our team. There was no judgment. Anyone could talk. Everyone felt very comfortable around each other and I think that was a big part of our group. … We just knew we were going to win. We just knew. No one was nervous before Game 6.”
On the victory parade: “It was unbelievable. We started at the rink and there were about 30 people around and we’re like, ‘oh, this might not be very good.’ Then we got to the main intersection and there were, like, tens of thousands of people. We had the Cup the whole time (on MacKinnon’s truck, with Gabe Landeskog) and selfishly that was awesome. People just went insane when they saw the Cup. That was probably the best day of my life I think. It was special.”
MacKinnon said he’s still keeping his day with the Cup a secret for now. But there will also be a parade in the town of Halifax on his Cup day, he said. He said his mom knows the mayor and is working on it.
Nathan MacKinnon also said he personally asked Avalanche management to go out and get Cogliano at the trade deadline. Pretty interesting stuff there.
There were no questions about his contract situation, but it’s pretty much a layup that he’ll sign a rich extension before the start of the season. At least that’s my opinion anyway.