Without a shadow of a doubt, it can be said that it has been an emotional week for the city of St. Louis.
Hearts were broken, people were lied to, and a city has a void that hasn’t been felt in decades.
But on Thursday night, two men stepped onto the ice before the game between the St. Louis Blues/Carolina Hurricanes, and just by their presence had 19,282 fans up on their feet and chant in unison the words “Kroenke sucks”.
Those two men were St. Louis Cardinals president Bill DeWitt III and Blues chairman Tom Stillman.
As they made their way to center ice for the ceremonial puck drop, DeWitt was wearing a Blues jacket while Stillman was wearing a Cardinals jacket. St. Louis was earlier dubbed “the best sports city today, and into the future” over the PA system, followed by the announcement of who would drop the ceremonial puck.
Once the two men were at center ice, the chants began. And for nearly a minute, they grew louder and louder, as Blues captain David Backes and ‘Canes captain Erik Staal were called to center ice as well, while the four men posed for photos before DeWitt dropped the puck. All four shook hands with each other, and DeWitt and Stillman made their way back off the ice.
And watching it all was a man who truly felt betrayed over the course of this week: St. Louis mayor Francis Slay, visibly touched by the moment that he had just witnessed.
Both the Cardinals and Blues aren’t just sports teams within the city of St. Louis: they are a part of St. Louis. Just as the St. Louis Zoo, Union Station, and Forest Park are. They’ve been a part of the city for over 50 years (over 100 if you’re the Cardinals).
That won’t change anytime soon.