Hischier, Chabot thrilled to be playing in Kraft Hockeyville
SUMMERSIDE – Players with ties to the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League are thrilled to be at Kraft Hockeyville in Summerside, P.E.I.
The game, which was won by the small town of O’Leary in April, featured the New Jersey Devils and the home Ottawa Senators. Things kicked off in the community on Sept. 23, culminating with the game on Sept. 25 at Credit Union Place. In the morning both teams had crowds of school kids and hockey fans watching them as the coaches took them through drills.
Thomas Chabot, who played just across the Confederation Bridge with the Saint John Sea Dogs, was looking forward to the game he told reporters after the game day skate.
“There’s going to be some good players out there,” said Chabot. “It looks like New Jersey is going to ice a good roster too. It should be a fun night.
He said he went golfing on Sunday while other players went fishing. He was feeling happy to be back.
“It’s fun to be back in the Maritimes,” Chabot told The Q News. “Obviously they won the contest for Hockeyville so it’s great for their town and community. I hope they’re going to enjoy the show tonight.”
Did Chabot have any advice for former Charlottetown Islander Filip Chlapik who is scheduled to suit up for the game? Not much.
“It’s like any other game,” said Chabot. “It’s going to be a little more exciting for him since he played just down the road in Charlottetown.”
Meanwhile, number one draft pick Nico Hischier, who will lineup tonight with NHL veteran Marcus Johansson, is excited.
“It’s a really good thing,” Hischier told TQN. “You can see the excitement from the kids. They’re really happy to see us. Everyone is happy to have both us and the Sens here. We’re really looking forward to the game and giving them a good show.”
Devils goalie Cory Schneider said it was his first time to the Island. He was looking forward to getting the start—a game coach John Hynes has said he will get to go the distance in.
“It’s an awesome place. I feel very welcomed,” he said. “It’s fun to come to these places when given this opportunity. We can tell how much winning Hockeyville means to them. “I can only imagine what it’s like for all those kids seeing us here. I’m excited for this.”
Hischier, born in Switzerland, lit it up as a Halifax Moosehead which had scouts drooling over his play that led him to going first in this past June’s NHL draft. He said the game against the Sens will be higher level of play. “I’m looking forward to playing this game,” he said.
Hischier said his Halifax billet family was going to be in the crowd for the Hockeyville game? Does that and the fact many may have seen him play with the Mooseheads bring any extra pressure? “It’s cool if there be Mooseheads fans here and I hope they cheer for the Devils,” he said.
The contest can be watched on Sportsnet at 6 p.m. Eastern, 7 p.m. Atlantic.