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Golden Knights Fan Receives Unique Holiday Gift

Tonopah, Nev. native Michael Dellinger receives giant Golden Knights sculpture from friends Thomas Wilson and Billy Hummel

by Dan Marrazza @GoldenKnights /

The value of a holiday gift often lies in eye of the receiver.

For little Ralphie, a Red Ryder BB Gun was the ideal gift. Turbo Man was the gift of choice for young Jamie Langston, where all Kevin McCallister wanted was his very own cheese pizza.

For Michael Dellinger, a Golden Knights season ticket holder prepared to commute 220 miles each way from Tonopah, Nev., for all Vegas home games, his perfect holiday gift had a golden twist to it.

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"It was wrapped in wrapping paper, they gave it to me on Christmas Eve," Dellinger said of the giant Golden Knights wooden sculpture that friends and fellow Golden Knights fans Thomas Wilson and Billy Hummel gave him this Christmas.

Dellinger said he'll be sharing his gift with his wife, Lorina, and that they'll be keeping their special gift (pictured below) above a bar in their basement.



"They were pretty excited," Dellinger said. "I was going to wait until Christmas (to open it), but they said 'no, open it now.' They might have been more excited at the time because they knew how great it was."

This is one of those gifts that seems miraculous not only because of the timely nature of coinciding with the Golden Knights' entry to the NHL, but also because of the level of effort that went into it.

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Although Dellinger said that it only took his friends approximately 12 hours to complete this project, the sculpting of this giant, wooden Golden Knights logo required an excess of special materials.

"It's made out of ¾-inch plywood," Dellinger said. "Then it's paint, a router, an X-ACTO knife, hammer and chisel.

"None of us really have a background in woodworking. But when you live in Tonopah, you have to rely on your own hands sometimes, because you can't just call a plumber. You have to be a jack of all trades. We do stuff like this all the time. Make stuff out of wood. It's kind of our hobby.

"I've built some stuff out of pallets, I've done a lot of work in my backyard. Thomas has built other sculptures, like a San Jose Shark one. Once the (Golden) Knights logo came out and was official, we just ran with it."

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Dellinger, Wilson and Hummel haven't just run with the concept of producing perhaps the most unique Golden Knight-related holiday gift we have ever seen. They've also run with the excitement of Vegas' entry into the NHL, which Dellinger (an army veteran) says was inspired by team owner Bill Foley's passion for the military.

In the past, Dellinger had supported the Pittsburgh Penguins, Hummel the Arizona Coyotes and Wilson the San Jose Sharks, although Dellinger said all three are excited to support a team based in Nevada.

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And this holiday season, with all due respect to Kevin McCallister's cheese pizza, we think the product of their enthusiasm is one of the more special holiday gifts we have ever seen.

Even if we weren't the ones who received it.

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