The Winnipeg Jets aren't in the NHL playoffs this year, but some local hockey fans are cheering for Dale Weise, a hometown boy who's finding success with the Montreal Canadiens this round.
The 25-year-old right wing scored two game-winning goals so far during the Canadiens' playoff run and has quickly become a fan favourite since arriving in Montreal in February.
The Habs — the only Canadian team vying for the Stanley Cup this year — are tied 2-2 with the Boston Bruins in the Eastern Conference semifinals after losing in overtime 1-0 on Thursday night.
Among those who are closely watching Weise's progress are people at Winnipeg's Gateway Recreation Centre, a rink that Weise knows well.
"Oh, so proud of him," Ray Unger, a skate sharpener at the rink, said Thursday.
Wally Shefchyk, who has been organizing a weekly scrimmage at Gateway for years — a scrimmage that Weise started attending as a teen — said the NHLer always hits the ice when he comes home for the summer.
"He phones me and says, 'I'm ready to go. Time for action.' Now, this year, it will be a little later than normal," Shefchyk said.
Weise hits the ice with players of all ages, which Shefchyk said is a cool way to encourage young people to work hard and study his skills.
Over at Big Boy Pizza, owner Raffaella Wiebe says her husband skated with Weise at Gateway and they have invited him over for a meal at the pizzeria.
Wiebe said her son is a big fan as well, recalling one of the games when Weise scored the winning goal.
"'Oh yeah! Dale scored the winning goal.' It was just kind of crazy," she laughed. "I'm sure next door has heard us."
Click on the video player above to watch a full report from the CBC's Alana Cole.