By Andrew Rankin - Metro Halifax
HALIFAX - It’s been a mind-bogglingly busy summer for Zach Fucale, but the Halifax Mooseheads’ No. 1 goalie isn’t complaining.
© Jamie Squire
Former Halifax Mooseheads goaltender Zach Fucale poses for a portrait after being selected by the Montreal Canadiens during the 2013 NHL Draft at the Prudential Center on June 30, 2013 in Newark, New Jersey.
After a superb Memorial Cup winning performance last spring, the 18-year-old embarked on an epic off-season, participating in Hockey Canada’s goalie development camp, the NHL draft combine, the draft itself, where he was selected 36th overall by the Montreal Canadiens, plus the Habs’ development camp. To top it off, earlier this month he joined Team Canada’s world junior camp in Brossard, Que., and Lake Placid, N.Y.
“It’s not been much of a summer,” he said with a laugh.
On Friday, he arrived in Halifax. On Saturday afternoon there he was at the Halifax Forum watching the Herd’s preseason opener against the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles.
“I also spent time relaxing at home with my family and I did all the things I needed to do to come back sharp for this season,” said Fucale. “I was really happy to get into Halifax yesterday and to get things going. Being with the guys and the team it’s certainly what we live for, playing hockey, winning games and having fun. It’s finally starting again.”
There was nothing complicated about Fucale’s summer training regime. Rather, he said it was about revisiting the basics of goaltending.
“I’m well rested to face the challenges this season. I’m fortunate to have those opportunities and I’m going to attack them with all that I can. I just want to keep going in the right way.”
One of his goals will be earning a spot on Team Canada’s world junior roster. He knows performing well in the first month of the season will go far in making that happen.
“But I know I just have to keep on doing what I’ve been doing: playing hard and stopping pucks and things will work out well for me.”
As for his transition to the NHL, he says the Habs are preparing to take his development in stride.
“It’s about stepping up every aspect of my game, that will be important for me. They just want me to have a good attitude, continue to be very positive and just keep developing.”
“It’s a long road to becoming who you really are.”