While there may not be much for Ottawa Senators fans to get excited about these days, the team does have a strong crop of rookies on the roster for 2018-19 including speedster Alex Formenton, 4th overall selection Brady Tkachuk and defenseman Maxime Lajoie.
Both Formenton and Tkachuk were near locks to make the team’s opening night roster, but the 20 year old Lajoie forced himself into the team’s plans with a strong training camp and preseason. Prior to last night’s home opener against the Chicago Blackhawks, Formenton, Tkachuk and Lajoie met with Sens reporter Brent Wallace for a brief interview segment that aired during intermission. When asked who Lajoie first reached out to when he learned that he had cracked the roster, Tkachuk’s reaction was pure gold.
Check it out:
Priceless! He’s a Tkachuk through and through!
How perfect is that reaction? I mean… just look at this face:
The joke’s on Tkachuk though, because Lajoie made one heck of a first impression against the Blackhawks last night.
Midway through the first period with the Sens down 2-1 to the Hawks, Sens forward Matt Duchene picked up the puck down low behind the Hawks net, found Lajoie crusing down mainstream and hit him with a perfect pass. Lajoie made no mistake, rifling it over the shoulder of Cam Ward and into the back of the net for his first career NHL goal.
Check out this snipe and check out the reaction from Lajoie’s parents sitting in the crowd:
As TSN broadcaster Gord Miller says in the above clip, Lajoie considered just playing in tonight’s game to be a “dream come true,” well just imagine how the kid feels now. His dream has come true, he’s an NHL goal scorer and no one can ever take that away from him. Even better? His according to Sens reporter Ian Mendes, Lajoie’s grandparents were reportedly in the crowd, a well.
How cool is that?! Again, such a special moment for Lajoie and his family. The 20 year old rookie played almost the entirety of the 2017-18 campaign with the Senators’ American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate Belleville Senators scoring just a single goal and 15 points in 56 games. The 6 foot one, 185 pound defenseman has never been a big point producer, but did manage seven goals and 42 points in 68 games during his last season of major junior hockey with the Swift Current Broncos of the Western Hockey League (WHL).