See, when I was in Grade 10 at Regiopolis-Notre Dame in Kingston, Ontario there was a new student who showed up one day named Dan Cleary, a young hockey player from Newfoundland, who’d been sent to Kingston to play hockey because (no word of a lie) his parents always heard Don Cherry on Coach’s Corner talking about how Kingston is a great hockey town.
Dan and I weren’t that close (we had English and Drama classes together, the highlights of which were, respectively, Dan offering me $50 to write an essay for him–turned down, because I don’t work for less than $100–and an hilariously profane Jerry Springer Show skit in which he played some trailer park floosie–in a kilt borrowed from one of the girls in our class–and I played Ross Perot–who was all the rage at the time) but he was a nice enough guy, said hello in the halls, that kind of thing. Plus he had a great story and lofty dreams of NHL stardom, and I admired that (having some lofty dreams of my own) and looked forward to when I could say: “Hey–I went to high school with that guy!”
Turns out we both moved away for Grade 11 (me to a little town called Perth, ON and Dan to Belleville to play for their OHL team, the Bulls) but I always remembered to keep my eye out for him if he ever made it to the NHL.
Well, like I said he was drafted in 1997 and has bounced around the NHL (and the professional hockey wilderness) a bit, but has really started to come into his own since signing with the Detroit Red Wings after the lockout.
There’s an article in the Globe & Mail today about him and his performance in Game 3 of the Red Wing/Flames series.
Guess who I’m cheering for?