Golden Knights give hope to young heart surgery patient

An eight-year-old boy is about to face his third open-heart surgery and he said the Golden Knights have been helping to get him through this tough time. (FOX5)

LAS VEGAS (FOX5) - The Vegas Golden Knights have given fans many reasons to love them.

But for some fans, the team helped them get through a particularly tough time and they couldn't be more excited for the start of the new season.

Eight-year-old Sai Mendoza-Santiago said he loves his Vegas Golden Knights.

"When my mom picked me up from school today I started going, 'Go Knights Go. Go Knights Go, Go Knights Go,'” Sai said.

His mom Trina Langley said Sai fell in love with the team last season while he was also going through heart surgeries.

"I asked him 'What made you so strong and brave?' And he said the Golden Knights. He said 'Everyone's expecting me to be Sai Strong so I have to be strong.' So I said, 'Ok what were you thinking about before your surgery?' And he said 'Bellemare and when he gave me the puck.' 'And what about when you were done with surgery?' He said 'the Golden Knights.' That's what they mean to him. They mean so much to him that during his most difficult time, he was thinking of them"

During Sai's last surgery in June, a whole group of Knights fans came to visit him in the hospital.

"It's really been a blessing because the community has really come together for our family and we just feel really fortunate and blessed and really thankful for all the new friendships that we've made because of the Golden Knights"

Months later, Sai has been feeling much better. At Thursday night's game, he even got to ride the Zamboni.

"Super excited, like I can't even imagine how other people would be this excited to ride a Zamboni and sit behind right behind the players,” Sai said.

All across the valley, fans have been showing off their Golden Knights pride as they take the ice for the start of season two.

"I'm absolutely proud to show off for my team,” fan Johnny Joseph said.

After decking out his car and license plate, Johnny Joseph proudly wears his team spirit on his leg.

"As I was being fitted for a new prosthetic leg, I asked my doctor 'What are the chances?' ... He goes, 'You don't even need to say so, absolutely.' He knew what I was going to ask him,” Joseph said.

Joseph said after seeing how the team has brought the city together he'll always be a big fan.

“I'm just a diehard fan. Go Golden Knights, we're gonna take this year,” he said.

Copyright 2018 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved. 

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