While many in Calgary and Southern Alberta fondly remember in 1989 the Calgary Flames taking it to the Habs for the Stanley Cup. Paul Richard kind of remembers it differently.
After all, what does a guy named Richard do growing up in eastern Canada? Playing shinny there may have been a few “Rocket” epitaphs thrown out. It would have been impossible to ignore the legacy of The Montreal Canadians. But it also was hard to ignore Game Six in the forum, the first time Les Habitants were beat out of championship at home.
“You can imagine the family history, the name,” he laughs.
In fact, Richard has a couple seats from the Montreal Forum taken out in 1996 after Canadians moved to their new home.
You would think with this history, Richard might be bringing something extra to the Drumheller All Stars versus the Calgary Flames Alumni next Wednesday at the Drumheller Memorial Arena. You would be wrong.
Kidding aside, “I am a community guy first and a hockey guy. I love the game,” said Richard. “May the best team win.”
Richard is on the Drumheller All Stars line going into the Wednesday's, November 11 match. The roster filled up in short order by area hockey fans ready to take on the Flames.
For Richard it is all about the community, and sees the value of the Badlands Community Facility.
The game is in benefit of the community facility. Other names lined up include Taylor Colberg and former Drumheller Dragon Trent Colberg, Casey Grayson, Jamie Worman, Rod Knelsen, Eric Hodgeson, Lenny Koch, Blair Christianson Darren Toffan, James Stefanishion, Gary Chambers, Den Olsen, Shane Straub, Sheldon Straub, Tony Pliva, Ryan Colberg, Brian Olsen, Paul Richard, Wes Chung, and Joe Castonguay.
Gary Chambers comes at the game from a bit different background. He would have been in grade school when he sat in his parent’s basement wearing his Joe Nieuwendyk jersey watching the Flames win the cup. He is excited to play against the legends he grew up watching.
“I grew up cheering for the Flames and watching the Flames and when a lot of these players were playing was during the cup run, so they were my idols at the time,” said Chambers.
He also says the game is for a good cause.
“I am a strong supporter of the community centre, the town needs it to grow,” he said. “It is a neat fundraiser and I like the energy of the event to kick off the fundraising.”
When surveying the list of players on the Drumheller team, Rod Knelsen, part owner of The Drumheller Dragons is worried he may be one of the most senior players on the squad.
As for his hockey affiliation his roots go back to the Broad Street Bullies, and he will be wearing number 16 in honour of his idol Bobby Clarke.
“This is something a person doesn’t get to do every day. Obviously I am really excited to play against some of those guys ,” said Knelsen.
“The Badlands Community Facility is obviously going to be huge for the community and something the community needs and I am excited to be part of this.”
There are tickets available at the Sports Room Source for Sports, Chinook Credit Union and ATB in Drumheller, for the game coming up on November 11 at the Drumheller Memorial Arena.