I caught up with Predators rookie Blake Geoffrion in recent days to get his thoughts on his first couple weeks in the NHL.
RLD: You’ve been up now for a few weeks. What’s been the experience like in the NHL? Geoffrion: It’s been great so far. Obviously there are a lot of differences here, flying charters instead of riding buses in the minors. The guys are great here. (Shea Weber) had me over for dinner with a couple of the rookies, so that was nice of him to do. Pretty quiet, pretty nervous first week, but I’m getting a little bit more comfortable and not nearly as nervous playing at home and stuff like that. Just need to continue to go here, and hopefully things will get more comfortable for me.” RLD: Is playing in the NHL kind of what you expected, or more? Geoffrion: It’s a little more than I expected… just with how well we’re treated here and how nice everyone is and everything like that. I thought I’d get tortured a lot more than I did; not to so I’m not going to! Everyone has been great here in the organization.”
RLD: How excited were you to not only make your NHL debut, but be immediately involved a crazy playoff race like this? Geoffrion: It’s pretty awesome. Every kid dreams of making the NHL, and their second dream is pushing to win a Stanley Cup. I have an opportunity here to do that, being in a playoff race like this. It’s the best time of year – anyone will tell you the best time of year is playoff hockey. The playoffs have started a little earlier this year with the races that are going on. Every game is huge and a must-win.
RLD: How special of a moment was it when you scored your first NHL goal? Geoffrion: It was really cool, just to be in that building with all of the tradition in Edmonton. To score against those guys – I just had a feeling I was going to score that night… I don’t why. I had faced (Martin) Gerber in the minors a couple times and felt pretty confident against him. It was a great feeling, though.
RLD: What does it mean to you to be the first ever fourth-generational professional athlete in sports history? Geoffrion: That’s uh… that’s pretty special. To say that’s the one ever in sports is pretty cool. I don’t even know what to say to that! I haven’t really thought about that much; I’ll take it all in at the end of the season when it’s over. But, that’s pretty special.
RLD: What do your family and friends think about you playing with the hometown Predators? Geoffrion: I know my mom and dad and everyone is just so proud and happy for me. I’m happy for them that they get to see me and I get to be home a little more. I did leave home at a pretty young age, so it’s good to be back with my mom and dad and see them on a regular basis. It’s special for me and my family.
Our podcast 'RLD Hockey Talk' is LIVE every Wednesday afternoon at 1:00 ET/Noon CT. Some of our notable guests in past episodes have been Dustin Brown, Doc Emrick, John Buccigross, Dave Strader, E.J. Hradek, Elliotte Friedman and Jay Grossman.