The Tampa Bay Lightning selected Steven Stamkos with the first overall pick of the 2008 draft, and the rest is history.
Stamkos marked the start of the team’s major rebuild, after having won the Stanley Cup in 2004, for the first time in franchise history. And while it took awhile for them to build a contending team, the front office eventually did exactly that.
And while Stamkos missed some games this season with a core muscle injury, he showed just how tough he is, coming back for the pivotal Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals, and scoring a goal in it.
So he certainly earned a beer — or several — at the team’s Stanley Cup boat parade on Wednesday, and he even chugged some of the frothy liquid out of the trophy.
What a time to be alive for Lightning players and fans.