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Salt Lake Shootout: Kings Asked If I Was Available, I Replied ‘Of Course, I Am’

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – I am what most people would call a hockey nut. I’m a huge fan of the game. I play it three to five times a week and I watch every game I can.

I was pretty excited about the L.A. Kings and Vancouver Canucks coming to play in Salt Lake. Preseason hockey is awesome to watch because guys are sometimes literally fighting for their spot on an NHL roster.

KSL Sports asked me to cover the game as their “hockey insider.” My excitement level rose a few notches. Now I have the opportunity to give hockey some “insider” coverage that the sport deserves and local hockey fans have craved for so long.

Courtesy of Jess Fleming

Then I got a phone call from the LA Kings asking if I’m available to “EBUG” (emergency backup goalie) for the game. I replied, “Of course, I am.”

My thoughts rushed to backing up Jonathan Quick, my favorite goalie to watch play. It’s explained to me that the Kings have their 3rd guy but since this game is their “home game” they needed to provide a guy for Vancouver.

Courtesy of Jess Fleming

Now my thoughts are along the lines of taking shots in the pregame skate from the likes of Brock Boeser, Elias Pettersson and, Quinn Hughes. My excitement level is pegged.

I was told to bring my gear to Vivint at 10 a.m. At 46 years old, there are no delusions of me getting my break into the NHL.

Courtesy of Jess Fleming

For 20 years now, I’ve been an “EBUG” for the Utah Grizzlies and other teams in the West Coast League, East Coast League, American Hockey League and have even practiced for the Columbus Blue Jackets in the NHL. I really enjoy these opportunities. I love being involved with the game at this level.

So tonight, if you are at the game watching fellow Utah born players Trevor Lewis and Richard Bachman being actual professional hockey players, look for me in the corner, in a suit, playing the part of 3rd string goalie, firefighter turned podcast host/sports reporter, living the dream and being a huge fan.

Utah Puck Report is a podcast all about Utah hockey, from interviews with NHL stars to which Grizzlies players are about to take the next step, Utah Puck Report has everything for a Utah hockey fan. Find it wherever you find podcasts or on