Spooner excited at chance to play at his home arena

Spooner excited at chance to play at his home arena
March 21, 2013, 2:00 pm
Share This Post

KANATA, ON – Ryan Spooner has previously admitted to being a big Montreal Canadiens fan growing up in Ontario.

So suiting up against the Ottawa Senators might not normally be a big deal, but the 21-year-old Spooner also hails from the Kanata hometown of Scotiabank Place arena where the Sens play their home games. So it will be friends and family in the stands for Spooner, who hopes to remain in the lineup for a second game as David Krejci pushes to be a “game time decision” for the Black and Gold while coming back from a bruised right knee.

Claude Julien was more than happy with what he saw out of Spooner in the loss to Winnipeg.

“He looked good. He was fine. It was his second [NHL] game so he was probably a little less nervous,” said Claude Julien. “He was flanked by a couple of big wingers, so he had lots of confidence to go out there and play his game.

“He skated well and he did a good job. I was happy with his game.”

Spooner said his parents, his uncle, his sister and a couple of his best friends from Kanata will take in Thursday night’s game, and for him it was a treat to go home on Wednesday’s off day and visit with family and his chocolate lab, Carll. The youngster said he was used to coming back to Ottawa as an enemy player from his OHL days playing against the Ottawa 67’s, but the stage will be a little bit higher with the stage changing to 18,000 screaming friends and neighbors at Scotiabank Place.  

“A lot of my buddies come to every home game anyway, so they’ll already be here. It would be great [to play]. I came to a lot of games [at Scotiabank Place] when I was like 11 or 12 years old,” said Spooner. “I’ve been coming here since I was really young so it would be great to get a chance to play here.

“I was a Sens fan, yeah. But my dad was a Montreal fan, so I tried to follow whatever my dad did growing up. I’ve been away from home since I was 16, so anytime you get to go home and see everybody it kind of refreshes you a little bit.”

The question also remains if Spooner would be in the lineup even if Krejci also returns to center the top line. He topped 15 minutes of ice time and managed a couple of shots on net in Tuesday night’s game against the Winnipeg Jets, and won 4-of-8 draws in a solid first full outing.

“I just want to keep things simple if I’m in the lineup. If I do that then everything else will take care of itself,” said Spooner. “If I’m meant to score then I’ll probably score.”

It does appear, however, that the bright Bruins prospect was meant to play in Thursday night’s NHL game at a Scotiabank Place arena where he grew up learning to love the game of hockey one trip at a time to the arena with his hockey-loving dad.