Local Indigenous alumni will take on Stanley Cup champions and Olympic medallists

There will be an impressive lineup of hockey heroes on the ice in St. Paul on Saturday, as the NHL Indigenous Alumni take on Indigenous alumni from the St. Paul Canadiens.

The ex-NHL team will be bolstered by four active national women’s team players from Canada and the USA. The local squad will have their hands full against a visiting team that includes longtime NHL veterans, Stanley Cup champions, world champions, and Olympic gold and silver medallists.

“I think you’re going to see a pretty damn good hockey game,” said St. Paul Canadiens Alumni Association president Patrick Lamoureux.

St. Paul will be represented by local players from throughout the club’s long history. “You’re going
to see a range of guys that played for the St. Paul Junior Canadiens dating back to late fifties. We’re trying to capture some from every decade,” Lamoureux said. “We’ve got a handful of Indigenous guys
that are touching on 70 and still playing hockey at a competitive level.”

But they’ll be in tough against the visitors.

“We have some former Stanley Cup winners and of course, the four national women’s hockey players—three from Canada and one from the U.S.,” Lamoureux said. “You’re going to see some world class talent on the ice playing against our alumni group. And we’re going to try to hang on to keep up with them, so it’ll be a fun game.”

Touring alumni teams like this one and the Montreal Canadiens Alumni are increasingly popular. They allow fans to connect with favourite players, and to revel in some nostalgia of past hockey glory.

And on the ice, age is a great equalizer—the former idols become mere mortals, playing the game just for the fun of it.

But it’s fun with a purpose, says Lamoureux. 

“It’s about community involvement for hockey and non-hockey participants,” he said. “It’s about giving, it’s about pride, it’s about community, it’s about awareness. It’s about letting the next generation of youngsters, boys and girls coming up through the system, be inspired, be motivated and see what you can accomplish in your community.”

No one charity has been earmarked to receive the proceeds, but Lamoureux said any revenue generated from the game will go to community programs.

“It will go back to some of the Indigenous programs. We’re hoping we can put 1,000 people in that building. The more proceeds we can raise, the more we can give out and help as many as we can.”

The puck drops at 4:00 pm on January 14, tickets are available at the door. A $20 ticket also includes admission to the St. Paul Canadiens vs Onion Lake Border Chiefs game that evening.

Meet the Indigenous NHL Alumni team:

Cody McCormick

Ojibway/Chippeweyan from Chippewa of the Thames First Nation. Played 405 NHL games with Colorado, Buffalo and Minnesota.

Jocelyne Larocque

Métis from St Anne, Manitoba. Has played over 100 games with Canada’s national women’s team. Has won three World Championships and two Olympic gold medals

Victoria Bach

Member of the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte First Nation. She has represented Canada three times in the World Championships winning Gold all three times (2014, 2021, 2022). Went to the 2022 Olympics as alternate.

Jamie Leach

Ojibway now living in Winnipeg, he played for Pittsburgh, Hartford and Florida over a five-year period. Won two Stanley Cups with the Penguins. 

Abby Roque

Born in Sault Ste Marie, Michigan. Ojibwe from Wahnapitae First Nation. In 2020 she was a first team All American playing for the Wisconsin Badgers. In 2022 she became the first Indigenous woman to play in the Olympics for her National team.

Jamie Lee Rattray

Métis from Kanata, Ontario. In 2014 she won the NCAA Patty Kazmaier Award as the top female college hockey player. She has represented Canada at five World Championships, winning Gold twice, and at the Beijing Olympic Games where she also won Gold.

Dan Frawley

Ojibway from Nipissing First Nation. Member of 1981 Memorial Cup champion Cornwall Royals. Played 273 games with Chicago and Pittsburgh, where he was team captain.

Devin Buffalo

From Samson Cree Nation, he played four years at Dartmouth College graduating with a degree in political science before turning pro.

Blair Atcheynum

Cree from Sweetgrass First Nation, he spent parts of
six years playing with Ottawa, St. Louis, Nashville, and Chicago. 

John Chabot

Played nine years in the NHL with Montreal, Pittsburgh and Detroit. He has a charity called First Assist which provides educational/sport programming in primarily Northern communities across the country.