42-Year-old Zamboni Driver Wins First NHL Game After Being Tapped as Emergency Goalie
This 42-year-old Zamboni driver is being hailed as a hockey hero after he stepped in as a visiting team’s emergency goalie and helped them win the game.
Dave Ayres, who is the Zamboni driver for the Toronto Maple Leafs, was tapped in to play against his home team for the Carolina Hurricanes after both of their goalies were injured on the ice during this weekend’s game.
Ayres then went on to block 8 of the 10 shots that were made against him during the remaining 30 minutes of the game, which helped to secure the Hurricanes’ 6–3 victory.
Although Ayres is a designated backup goalie, this was the first time that he was ever forced to play, making it his first ever NHL game.
When reporters asked him what he will remember from the experience, he simply said: “These guys, how great they were to me, how fun. The crowd in Toronto is unreal. Even though I was on the other team, they were so receptive and so awesome. Every time I made a save I could hear them cheering for me.”
Since Ayres underwent a kidney transplant 15 years ago, he never believed he would play hockey again. Now, however, the Hurricanes are selling an official Ayres jersey with a portion of the proceeds being donated to a kidney transplant charity of his choice.
According to the NHL, Ayres’s weekend performance also made him the second-oldest hockey player to make their professional debut in the NHL following 43-year-old Lester Patrick’s game in 1927.
(WATCH the heartwarming interview below) – Photo by NHL
This interview says it all.
Dave Ayres will have a memory for a life time. pic.twitter.com/upqccSjVVm
— NHL (@NHL) February 23, 2020
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Published at Mon, 24 Feb 2020 20:09:40 +0000