Sports leave a lasting impression
For athletes or fans, there are always several sports memories throughout our lives that are very dear to us.
In the blink of an eye, something amazing can happen, which reiterates our continuous passion for the game.
Byron Froese of Winkler, Man., plays centre for the Toronto Marlies of the American Hockey League. He said that he has memories that will be with
The Chicago Blackhawks drafted Froese at the 2009 NHL entry draft in the third round at 119th overall.
Froese said his greatest memory was making his NHL debut for the Toronto Maple Leafs against the Montreal Canadiens on Oct. 24, 2015.
“It was a feeling of mixed emotions,” said Froese.
He said he was excited to have all of his hard work pay off. He was also nervous because he wanted the game to go perfect and to showcase his offensive and defensive skills.
Seeing as the Bell Centre is one of the NHL’s loudest, and most historic arenas, he was sure to be put to the test.
His parents and two brothers were at the game to cheer him on. It was a dream-like moment for Froese, as he grew up watching the Canadiens play when he wasn’t training himself.
“It was pretty surreal leading up to the game but as soon as the puck dropped it was just another hockey game,” said Froese.
Froese said the thing about sports that brings people together is having a common interest and goal in mind for one team. He said the other thing that keeps him going is the rivalries that come with sports.
Froese said he believes that every athlete loves competition, as it brings out the fight in all of us.
“Rivalries just make the game that much more intense and makes you want the win that much more.”
His favourite memories have been while watching the Toronto Blue Jays in the post-season over the last two years.
More specifically the “bat flip” by José Bautista that happened on Oct. 15, 2015 in game five of the American League divisional series. Bautista hit a three-run home run in the seventh inning to put the Blue Jays in the lead against the Texas Rangers.
That game is famous for the seventh inning not only because of what Bautista did, but for the dramatic events that occurred before the historic moment.
Froese was in a downtown establishment in Toronto when it happened. He remembers watching it and the whole place going crazy.
“The energy was like a roller coaster,” said Froese.
“It will easily go down as one of the greatest sports moments in Canadian history.”
To Froese, these are memories that will stay with him forever. They are moments that he will be able to share with friends and family for the rest of his life.
That grand joy of lining up for your first face-off in the Bell Centre, or watching your favourite team create a historic moment are all part of what make sports so magnificent and keep fans wanting more.