SUN Hockey Pool

Flames' Seabrook finds motivation

RANDY SPORTAK, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:06 PM ET

PENTICTON, B.C. — Calgary Flames defensive prospect Keith Seabrook doesn’t need more motivation to make the NHL than he already has.

Still, the second-year pro was given a jolt when his brother, Brent, had his day with the Stanley Cup this summer.

“That was so cool,” Seabrook said of his older sibling’s time with hockey’s Holy Grail. “We had a bunch of friends and family over in the morning.

“We took it down to the rink and the fire hall and saw a bunch of kids.

“Then a bunch of buddies of ours all played road hockey for it, and that was fun.

“It definitely gives you something to shoot for. It’s pretty special being around it and how much attention and togetherness it brings. We live in a small town (Delta, B.C.), and it was unbelievable to see the turnout for it.

“It makes you give a little extra.”

Brent skated to the championship with the Chicago Blackhawks, finishing off a great year in which he also won the Olympic gold medal in Vancouver.

Keith, who skated two seasons for the WHL’s Calgary Hitmen before graduating to the professional ranks, was at the arena in Vancouver when Canada beat the U.S. in the gold-medal game.

He also managed to be on-hand for the final two games of the Stanley Cup final series, which saw the Blackhawks defeat the Philadelphia Flyers in six games.

“I watched all the games at home when we were out and tried to watch them when we were on the road for playoffs, but going down there and being part of the whole celebration and the aura of it was a pretty special thing,” Sea-brook said.

Not that his own season wasn’t something to relish.

Seabrook, 22, compiled 10 goals and 28 points in the regular season for the AHL Abbotsford Heat. He added another two goals and a helper in 12 playoff games.

“I thought I took the right steps coming into the season and thought I played well. It was a fun first year,” said the 6-foot., 200-lb. blueliner from the West Coast.

“I think I was about where I figured I’d be. I started out well, got a lot of points and had a lull in the middle when I wasn’t getting any, but I was happy with my production as a first-year defenceman.

“I got a lot of powerplay time, and if I end up there this year, that will be a point of focus for me.”

Seabrook saw plenty of ice time for a Heat squad, which was constantly beset by a rashes of injuries.

“I was just relishing it,” he said of the ice time and not the injuries to teammates.

“I tried to do as much as

I could with it. Hopefully, the same thing happens this year — I get a lot of ice time and take advantage of it.

“When I play my best is when I’m relied on to play a lot of minutes and do a lot.

I enjoy the pressure and enjoy the competition.”

That’s especially true if he eventually has his day with the Stanley Cup.

He hopes not to have jinxed his chances by breaking the rule of not touching it until you’ve won.

“But I had my eyes on it the whole time,” Seabrook said.

“I didn’t play (road hockey) for it. I’ve got to save that for the real thing.”

randy.sportak@sunmedia.ca


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