To earn a living and live off their passion for hockey, some less gifted players had no choice but to regularly throw people out.
Several Quebecers have confided in journalist Marc-André Perreault on this subject. Fans will also be able to hear their testimonies during the broadcast of the documentary “Combats d’une vie” on the TVA Sports network, Friday at 7 pm.
Some did it to gain respect on the ice and others to impress recruiters. Some liked to fight, and others didn’t. But they have one thing in common: They made a living with their fists, mostly in the North American Hockey League (LNAH).
“I don’t know any youngster who will play [hockey] at the park, who sits in a snowbank for half an hour and then embarks on the ice to fight, argued Joël Thériault, drafted in the fourth round by the Washington Capitals in 1995 without succeeding in making his place in the National Hockey League [LNH]. These are things that happen in the heat of the moment. When I started, that was not my goal. ”
Make his name
Having made his way to the NHL, Patrick Bordeleau is categorical: it is his talents as a pugilist that allowed him to climb the ranks, one by one, to the NHL.
“When I came to the East Coast in Florida, I was earning $ 350 a week [brut], said Bordeleau. I ate my black bread. Peanut butter toast and Kraft Dinner, all that. [Un jour], my trainer, John Marks, said to me, “Look Pat, there are American League scouts [LAH] who are here. They find you have the potential to break through, but they don’t like how you are on the ice. ”
This discussion took place in 2007-2008 at the Ice Pilots of Pensacola. The following year, he got his first chance in the AHL. Then in 2012-13, he made his NHL debut with the Colorado Avalanche. He has thrown the gloves 12 times in 129 NHL games, according to the Hockey Fights website.
– “Combats d’une vie” will be presented on Friday, 7 pm, on the TVA Sports channel.