“After an eight-month hiatus, I decided that was enough and chose to start the season in the Austrian Hockey League,” explains the man who has provided Predator to EC GRAND Immo VSV, a team based in Villach.
Allard took the lead even though his decision made him miss the Predators camp. “It’s been a Covid-19 year and with a week-long camp, I knew it was unrealistic to think that I could get a place for myself with the team,” he explains, adding that his choice to pick Austria would ultimately be a blessing to him.
“The great ice cream in Austria has helped me a lot to improve my skating, which I so desperately need. I have already played on Olympic-size ice with Chicoutimi Saguenéens, but it was all a bit too far away,” Allard said. “For the rest, it’s faster, it hits less and the players are smaller than it is in MLS. In the end I will have played more than 50 games in my season while the others only played 26.”
On his return from Europe, where the hockey leagues had resumed operations in North America, Allard was loaned to the MLS Chicago Wolves only to be called up for over a month to Nashville, where he played. His first NHL game before ending the season with Wolves.
“The NHL was a childhood dream that came true and on top of that, it was against the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Stanley Cup champion. I was looking at all these players and I was like, ‘Wow, you got there!”’ he says.
After tasting the Bettman circuit, Allard of course wants more. “I work a lot on my physical game to be stronger and more solid on my skates. My goal now is to play more NHL games next season.”
For Brian Liszot, the presence of these two young professionals is a very good incentive for the youngsters who are involved in his hockey school. “This is it Pleasure To see that they want to give back to young people because they really are role models for them. The children came wide-eyed when they saw her today.”
“Evil thinker. Music scholar. Hipster-friendly communicator. Bacon geek. Amateur internet enthusiast. Introvert.”