During my time at the Hockey Hall of Fame, I usually spend at least 2 hours a day upstairs in the Great Hall with the Stanley Cup. On a slow day, I'm usually completely alone with the great trophy. During this time I think to myself "I am really lucky, I'm right now alone with the most prestiges trophy in the world for about an hour." A lot of people would kill to have that once, where I get to do it every time I go to work.
This gets me thinking, why are there slow days at the HHOF? The HHOF alone shows why hockey is one of the greatest sports in the world. In what other sport's hall of fame will they let you come in there and touch their championship trophy, never mind that this is the most famous trophy in the world. It just doesn't happen. This is a trophy that Wayne Gretzky, Steve Yzerman, Joe Sakic, Mark Messier, Bobby Orr, Gordie Howe, George Armstrong, etc. have lifted over the many years and all the history that surrounds it.
You just look at the names and you remember stories. Things like how Bob Baun broke his ankle in Game 6 of the finals only to come back in overtime to score the winning goal. Maybe something like Bill Barilko's story where he was a defenseman just coming into his own and scores what is probably the most famous goal in Maple Leaf history, which was the Cup winning goal against the Montreal Canadiens in Game 5 in overtime, only to become a victim of a plane crash that offseason. To add on to that story, the Leafs didn't win another Cup until 11 years after that goal, which also happened to be the same time when they found Barilko's remains. Or maybe you guys remember the riots in Montreal when then NHL president Clarence Campbell suspended Rocket Richard for the rest of the season and playoffs. By looking at the names on that cup all those stories come to life.
Even without the Cup, though it is the main attraction, the Hall of Fame has a lot to take in. They have a wall of inductees in the Great Hall where each plaque has a short biography on it in English and in French. Also you have the NHL zone where there are all sorts of displays for Gretzky, Lemieux, Orr, Howe etc. The Lucky Looney is on display in the "World of Hockey" as well as things from all of the Canada Cups, World Cups, World Championships, and the 1972 Summit Series. While you also can't forget the games in "Hometown Hockey" where you can test your skills as a shooter and as a goalie.
So if your ever in Toronto, check the place out. It's the perfect place to go to if your a die hard hockey fan like myself. Especially if your up with the Cup, don't be afraid to talk to the employee up there, we're more than happy to answer any questions and even better, talk hockey.
I know I am.