Mark Scheifele surprises young Winnipeg hockey players at practice
Winnipeg Jets forward named KidSport Winnipeg's hockey ambassador
Winnipeg Jets forward Mark Scheifele surprised some nine-year-old hockey players with a visit to their rink.
Scheifele was a special guest at the Dakota Lazers 9A2 boys team practice at the Terry Sawchuk Memorial Arena on Monday evening.
"It's crazy. It's almost like a dream come true. I can check it off my bucket list!" said Seth Cancilla, who also received a hockey stick from Scheifele.
The event was organized by KidSport Winnipeg, which named the 21-year-old centre its new hockey ambassador.
"When you see a kid and his face lights up when he sees you, it definitely humbles you and it puts … a bigger smile on your face knowing how much it means to them that you put that smile on their face," Scheifele told reporters.
KidSport Winnipeg says it has teamed up with Scheifele for two fundraising events this summer: a two-day hockey camp for children on June 20-21, followed by a golf tournament on June 22.
"Every kid deserves to play sports and get the opportunity to play in an organized team or learn how to play a sport, so it's huge for me," Scheifele said.
Earlier on Monday, Scheifele and Jets captain Andrew Ladd visited students at Bairdmore School as part of I Love to Read Month.
Hailing from Kitchener, Ont., Scheifele was drafted by the Jets in the first round of the 2011 NHL entry draft. He is currently a top six forward with the team.
Before joining the Jets roster, he played junior hockey with the OHL's Barrie Colts and the AHL's St. John's IceCaps, the latter being the Jets' farm team.
As well, he represented Team Canada at the World Junior Hockey Championships in 2012 and 2014.