Moments after the Penguins beat the Nashville Predators in Game 6 of the Final to clinch their second straight Stanley Cup back in June, Brian Dumoulin thought of a promise he had made to his coach at Boston College.
The summer before, legendary bench boss Jerry York had watched the defenseman take the Cup to his hometown of Biddeford, Maine - becoming the first player to bring the trophy to that state. And while York said that it was terrific to see, he told Dumoulin that next year, he should consider bringing it to Boston College.
"Brian said 'well, we've got to win it again,'" York recalled. "I said, 'well, go win the thing.' And he did, back to back, so I couldn't be more excited to have the Cup back."
The feeling was mutual for Dumoulin, who played for the Eagles from 2009-13 and still returns to campus every summer to skate and work out.
"It's funny, last year we had a great time back in Maine and had a special time back in my hometown," the 25-year-old defenseman said. "And then this year, obviously winning it so close to each other, we thought we'd do something different and bring it down to Boston.
"I went to BC for three years, this is what helped develop me as a person and as a player to eventually win the Stanley Cup. And actually, last year, I promised coach York if I won it again that I'd bring it back to BC. And of course, he helped me on that promise (laughs). So here we are. It's special to be able to bring it back here."
Dumoulin brought the Stanley Cup to the Kelley Rink at the Conte Forum on Friday morning as part of his day with the trophy. When he arrived around 10:30 a.m., he brought the Cup into an upstairs room and placed it on a table between the two NCAA championship trophies he had won in 2010 and '12 with the Eagles.
Dumoulin then spent the next hour posing for photos with family and friends with different combinations of the trophies before taking the Cup downstairs. Along the way, he stopped in his old locker room and the strength & conditioning room and even paused to take photos with some construction workers, who couldn't wait to show their buddies.
"It's cool just because I still walk the hallways and see all these people every day," Dumoulin said before adding with a laugh, "It's funny, when I bring the Stanley Cup here they seem more talkative and want to take more pictures than when I'm just walking around here by myself. It's cool to be able to share this with the people here. They're the same people when I was here that are still here today. It's special and they're just great people."
After Dumoulin deposited the Cup downstairs for a public appearance, he walked back up to the concourse, where he took the time to talk with reporters. At one point, he stopped to reflect on the fact as he talked, he was looking out right at the old dorm where he lived with seven of his teammates his sophomore year.
"It was crazy to kind of think about it then and how we were just focused on school and passing and playing hockey," said Dumoulin, who not only won a second Cup this summer, but also signed a six-year contract extension. "We had such a routine and such a ritual that it's weird to think about now. Winning a Stanley Cup and being able to be in Pittsburgh for the next six years, it's pretty special. It all comes back around full circle, and it's cool to be back here."
Dumoulin is still focused on school somewhat, as he is one class away from earning his bachelor's degree in marketing. Last summer, he took an elective psychology course called "Human Development Through a Lifespan" that required him to be on campus and in the classroom twice a week. He didn't sign up for anything this summer, but plans to finish school during the fall semester.
"Met with the teacher and we're going to do an independent study for my last class," he said. "I'm still chipping away at it and hopefully by the spring semester I'll be done."
After spending the morning on campus, in the afternoon Dumoulin took the Cup to Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in nearby Charlestown, where he and his fiancée Kayla now have a house. He then spent the evening hosting friends and family at Legal Harborside for dinner before taking them out on a boat in the Boston Harbor despite rainy conditions.
Now that Dumoulin's second day with the Cup is over, he and Kayla will be heading back to Pittsburgh soon, where it's time to prepare for the possibility of a three-peat.
"I am looking forward to getting back," Dumoulin said. "It's crazy, just because we come back here and it's good to be along the coast for the summer. Then you come back to Pittsburgh, and it reminds you of Maine, and it's nice to go back there and get back to work."