Congrats to Broncos defenceman Dillon Heatherington on making Team Canada for the World Junior Championship tournament. For a long time I was skeptical he would get the call. Heatherington doesn’t posses flashy numbers and doesn’t make spineramas in neutral zone. He doesn’t get a lot of press. What he does is provide smart, consistent and effective play night in and night out. He earns the confidence of every coach he plays for and is maybe the best penalty killer in the league.
What team couldn’t use someone like that? What could wouldn’t want someone like that?
I’m really glad to see Hockey Canada saw what we in Swift Current have been seeing and what Columbus saw when they picked him in the second round of the NHL draft. As much as it’ll pain the Broncos to face four games in five nights after the holiday break without one of their best players, it’s awesome to see Dillon get the opportunity he has worked so hard for. I truly believe Canada is a better and more reliable team for it.
The tournament starts with Canada against Slovakia on Boxing Day.
It was also a big week for Brett Lernout as the big Manitoba product signed his entry level contract with the Montreal Canadiens. What a difference a year makes. 365 days ago at this time Lernout was just starting to make a name for himself and climb the draft rankings after going previously undiscovered. Now he has inked a deal with the most famous and historic NHL franchise. Hard work pays off. This also means Lernout has a very good chance of playing in the AHL next season so we should enjoy watching him play while we can.
We made an addition to our roster at my house as well. You may have noticed I wasn’t on the air during the big win over Saskatoon. Thanks so much to Marc Smith from Moose Jaw radio for helping me out and covering for me. He did a terrific job especially considering how little notice he had for the game. I owe him and Darren Evjen for making that broadcast work while Erin was going into labour. I never want to miss any games but it was all worth it when we welcomed my first daughter to the world last Thursday morning at 10:27am. Audrey Blair Mullin has me instantly wrapped around her finger and all those clichés about the moment you meet your kids really are true.
Thanks for all the kind words and congratulations we received. I hope all the Broncos players, families, staff, volunteers and fans have a wonderful Christmas and holiday season. We are right back to work on Saturday with the start of a home and home series between the Pats and Broncos. Can’t wait to get back to the rink.