Andrew Ladd was quick to deflect the praise when it was suggested he might have a future in hockey as a general manager.
Ladd captained his club to a 14-8 victory over Team Mark Stuart on Saturday afternoon before a capacity crowd of 1,700 hockey-starved fans who packed the house and helped raise $80,000 for the Children’s Hospital Foundation and the Dream Factory.
“Either I’m really good or (Stuart) is really bad. We had fun and it didn’t matter what the score was,” said Ladd. “The charities were the ones that really won the game. It was good.”
Ladd was one of the many players who were impressed by the turnout.
“Yeah, it was awesome. Right from the get-go, not only the turnout, but the support from the businesses that helped us out, in sponsoring the event and sponsoring the indiviudal players was awesome. Everyone was eager to get involved and to help out,” said Ladd. “This wouldn’t have been possible without their support.”
Ladd and Winnipegger Jonathan Toews played together regularly, showcasing the chemistry they occasionally had when they were teammates with the Chicago Blackhawks.
“It was always great when we did get to play together back in the day,” said Toews. “Ladder comes here and is the captain and has done such a great job so far. Obviously, I call him Captain Winnipeg now too. I’m happy he’s the Golden Boy here in Winnipeg. He’s an all-around great guy and he does things the right way.”
Speaking of guys who do things the right way, former Jet Tanner Glass was among the players in attendance and enjoyed being back in Winnipeg for the first time since signing with the Pittsburgh Penguins as a free agent during the off-season.
Glass showcased his sense of humour when asked if he might consider heading overseas if the lockout drags on.
“I’d like to, but I don’t know how many teams are looking for a third or fourth-line grinder over there,” said Glass.
A G-S-T chant broke out, but it didn’t carry the same weight as the one that was frequent inside the MTS Centre last season.
“The GST chant didn’t go over very well either, maybe I’m to blame for that,” said Glass. “Or maybe (Chris) Thorburn is to blame for that because he wasn’t here. I don’t know.”
The rugged winger also offered his thoughts on the lockout when I asked him if he felt the season was in serious jeopardy of being lost?
“Honestly, I don’t know what to think, it would be absolutely crazy to lose the season but that being said, I thought we’d have a deal done by now too,” said Glass.