Friend turned foe: Former VGK, now Wild defenseman Brad Hunt looks ahead to opening round series

Anaheim Ducks' Kevin Shattenkirk (22) shoots past Vancouver Canucks' Brad Hunt (77) during the...
Anaheim Ducks' Kevin Shattenkirk (22) shoots past Vancouver Canucks' Brad Hunt (77) during the second period of an NHL hockey game Wednesday, Dec. 29, 2021, in Anaheim, Calif.(Jae C. Hong | AP)
Updated: May. 15, 2021 at 4:20 PM PDT
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LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) - Brad Hunt was an original Golden Misfit, part of the Vegas Golden Knights magical and improbable year one run to the Stanley Cup Final. He was part of the foundation that made Vegas a hockey town, but now he is back on the strip, looking to play spoiler.

“Any time you can play in the Stanley Cup playoffs it’s an amazing feeling, I did it the year before with Nashville as well going all the way to the Finals,” said Minnesota Wild defenseman, Brad Hunt.

“It’s such a special thing and for us it’s just fun, this is what we played for, we played this whole season to get where we are now and it kind of erases everything previously. I think when you play your ex-teammates or your ex-friends, you have to put that aside when it comes to the Stanley Cup. That is the ultimate goal and everyone is in the same position, so when you’re out there it’s one of those mentalities , there are no friends on the ice. In the playoffs there are no friends in the whole series, after that stuff everyone understands on both sides that after hockey is over, you’re always going to have those friends forever, but at this time your brotherhood are the people in this locker room here in Minnesota and that’s all we’re going to focus on.”

There are just ten players on the Golden Knights current roster that were part of that Western Conference Championship team in 2018. Hunt put up 25 points in 58 games played as a member of the Golden Knights prior to be traded midway through season two of the franchise.

“It’s crazy the amount of turnover, but they’re such a great team and they’ve had great players before and they have great players now,” said Hunt. It’s obviously a special place for my family and I on that run we went on, but now in Minnesota it’s a great place and a great team here, we’re excited to play. There has been a lot of turnover, but it’s always for the best.”

The Golden Knights tell FOX5 that T-Mobile Arena will be at 50% capacity for the first time this season. That will be the largest NHL crowd in any arena to date since the pandemic. Hunt and the Wild say they can’t wait.

“It’s going to be incredible, game one of the Stanley Cup playoffs, the place is going to be buzzing, it’s going to be so special, anytime you get to play in the Stanley Cup playoffs it’s really special, I know both teams are going to be really fired up for it and it’s going to be a fun series,” said Hunt. “I’ve had such a great experience with my travels through the NHL, I met so many great people, a lot of people that helped me out like in Vegas, George and Kelly, what they did for me a couple years ago, helped me be where I am today and I have nothing but good things to say, but I can’t wish em luck.”