Skeet shooting for big season with Grand Forks Border Bruins

One of the new Bruin recruits is from Christina Lake and he's ready to play some hockey.

Christina Lake's John Skeet is ready for his first season with the Grand Forks Border Bruins.

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John Skeet, a recent signee of the Grand Forks Border Bruins, moved west to Christina Lake with his family three years ago when his parents were looking to get out of the big city of Calgary. In a short time, the family has settled into the area well and John says they’re loving it here.

“We had a cabin at Christina Lake since I was little,” he said. “One day my parents just said, ‘hey, we should move there.’ So we up and moved out here and have been enjoying a pleasant life in one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen.”

After playing for two seasons with the Kootenay Ice Major Midget team, Skeet feels ready to step into the Border Bruin’s line-up.

The burly defender is one of the team’s key off-season signings and one of the reasons coach and general manager Nick Deschenes is confident the team will be much improved this year.

“I’m very excited to be playing for the Border Bruins,” he said.

Skeet was an affiliate player (AP) last year and got to see action in a few games.

“I had a great experience,” he said. “It’s funny, in Calgary, Junior B is not a very competitive league. It’s just for guys that want to have a good time. Junior B out here is almost the equivalent of Junior A out there. I’m really looking forward to that kind of environment. I’ve never had that kind of experience before.”

Skeet graduated from Grand Forks Secondary School last year. He logged many kilometres traveling to practices in Nelson, Trail and Castlegar with the Kootenay Midget Ice team.

“During the winter it got pretty nasty on the pass,” he said. “I got stuck on the pass a few times and didn’t get home until two or three in the morning.”

The burly defenceman, who can also play forward, has attended the Bruins’ boot camp as well as the team’s main camp and is looking forward to the start of the regular season.

“I like to bring a very physical presence to games,” he said. “I’ve never been much of a goal scorer or point-getter. I’m not a scorer at all. I hit. That’s my game. That’s how people know me – by my hitting.”

Skeet said the team’s first boot camp was a great experience although he couldn’t participate in any of the active drills after getting stitches after putting a stick through his foot the day before camp started.

“I couldn’t walk very much but I still wanted to be part of the group and hang out with the guys,” he said. “I still had a great time.”

Skeet is also showing a commitment to community that some might think is lacking in young people. He was on hand at the Christina Lake unveiling and raising of the visitor centre information flag a week ago and even helped take down the pole to put up the flag.

Skeet has high hopes for the Bruins this year, despite the lack of success the franchise has had recently.

“Already, I can see and feel a very good team camaraderie,” he said. “We’re all very close even though we haven’t known each other very long. The players from last year, even though they don’t really know me that well, treat me like one of their own. I think there’s a really good team dynamic. I’m really looking forward to this year.”

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