Before we kick-off this interview, X Hockey would like to offer our deepest condolences to #xhockeyplayers Owen and Elliot Wright on the passing of their father Dave. Dave was a heck of a hockey dad, road trip guitarist, father, and person. The world lost a good one this past weekend, that is for darn sure.
Noah Wilson was the 176th overall player selected in the 2018 QMJHL Midget Draft, but that did not stop the St. John's native from growing as a player and cracking the Drummondville Voltigeurs line-up in 2019-20. Coach AP caught up with the 17 year old and talked hockey, francais cuisine, and other stuff that readers might find mildly interesting.
AP: Lets dive into the 2019-20 season - 32 games played, a couple of snipes from the back end... who was the first one on, what building, and how did it all go down?
NW: It was in Cape Breton (Centre 200) around Remembrance Day. We do two Maritime trips a year, and this was at the end of our first one. One of our forwards took a shot and the puck went off the post; I jumped down in the offensive zone and got the rebound. I think their backup was in that night (chuckles).
Side Note: Noah may be implying that this shot would not have gone in if the starter was in. Ha. Ha?
AP: You were a mid-round pick in the 2018 QMJHL Midget Draft. With the 2020 Q Draft coming up in June, what advice would you give a mid-round pick heading into a major junior camp?
NW: Work hard, and make a good first impression! Don’t be intimidated by the older guys around you - they were in the same situation as you one time so don't be afraid to ask the veterans a question. The same goes for the coaches - if you're not sure how to do a drill, ask one of the coaches.
AP: You're an english-speaking guy playing in a predominantly french-speaking town (Drummondville) - is there a language barrier there?
NW: We have a good mix in the locker room - half english, half french and everyone knows english pretty well. It’s not as bad as you might think. The people in Drummondville are nice, and they understand that you don’t know french so they’ll speak in english for the most part. Ordering food at a restaurant can be tricky sometimes though (laughs).
AP: What's it like playing for Steve Hartley? He stopped me on a 2-on-1 once. I shoved it into his pads. Happened during one of the 6 shifts I'd get per game that season.... 4th line life aint easy!
NW: Steve's a good coach, knows his stuff. He gets the best out of his players, and really pushes the boys in practice. I think he’s a guy that could move up the coaching ranks. We outperformed our potential this season and I think Steve was a big part of that.
AP: You do your off-ice training at Atlantic Pro Sports. Just touch on how big of an influence the trainers at APS have had on you, what it's like training there, and how you're keeping pace in the (virtual) gym during COVID19
NW: JR (Jon Reid) has done a lot for me, even with COVID19. I cant go to the gym, but he has an in-home program for me and a lot of the local guys who play high level. Jon is real knowledgeable and we do a lot of hockey-specific training there. We have access to people like dieticians, and Jon played the game at a high level so he understands what hockey players need.
AP: Hypothetical situation - I fly to Drummondville to watch Noah Wilson play. Where do I go to eat before the game, and where do I go after the game for an adult beverage?
NW: There’s a place called ‘Le Roy Jucep' on Boul. Saint Joseph - they claim to have invented the poutine. Not a pre-game meal but if you like poutine, it’s real good. Nightclubs - dude how would I know! I’m pleading the 5th on this one AP (chuckles awkwardly)
Side Note: Guess I'll be driving to Montreal after the game. Saint Catherine's Street, here I come
For more information on Atlantic Pro Sports, check out their web site at https://www.atlanticprosports.net/ . If you're hungry and happen to be in Drummondville, order some poutine online at https://www.jucep.com/accueil .... I should be getting kickbacks for these friendly plugs. You're freakin' welcome.
Until next time