Phil Kessel is currently a free agent, and fans have started to wonder if his incredible career is coming to an end.
Kessel signed with the Vegas Golden Knights in the summer of 2022, and just a couple of months later, he played his 989th consecutive game in the NHL, tying Keith Yandle’s Iron Man streak.
The night after, he officially passed Yandle for the Iron Man record, and during the historic 2022-23 season for the Vegas Golden Knights, Kessel played all 82 regular-season games.
Kessel started the team’s first round of the playoffs as well, but in Game 5, he was a healthy scratch. It was the first game Kessel missed since October 31, 2009, but since the Iron Man streak only counts regular-season games, it didn’t affect his streak of consecutive games played.
Kessel didn’t play anymore in the Golden Knights’ playoff run, in which they won their first-ever Stanley Cup.
Kessel was praised for how he behaved in the locker room and for being a leader, keeping the morale high despite being a healthy scratch throughout the cup-winning run.
Kessel is one of hockey’s most universally well-liked figures and a character that will be missed the day he decides to call it a career. Kessel is a three-time Stanley Cup champion, but the stories about him often involve things he does and say off the ice.
Kessel is known for being a hilarious teammate, someone who is always chirping and delivering amazing one-liners. Few things are as funny as when players make an impression of Kessel, and few do it better than Jack Eichel.
When sports reporter Jonny Lazarus skated a lap with Eichel, who won the Cup with the Golden Knights earlier this year, for his YouTube channel, he asked Eichel to do a Phil Kessel impression, and he didn’t disappoint.
”Jackie, you and Marcy, you guys think you’re f**cking players, aye?” Eichel said, with a hilarious Kessel voice.
”I shouldn’t have said the F-Word …” he continued.
Fans on social media found Eichel’s Kessel impression absolutely spot-on and hilarious.
”Love the idea of Kessel chirping Jack while not even dressing for the game,” one said.
”Guys doing Phil Kessel impressions will never get old to me. It kills me every time,” another said.
”I feel like it wouldn’t be a proper Kessel impression without the F word,” a third added.
See the impression here, at the 01.04 mark: