White where he wants to be

RANDY SPORTAK, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:30 AM ET

Ryan White had a great view of his first NHL point.

It was from the bench.

Confused? That's understandable. However, we'll make sense of it all.

"It was the end of my shift and we were in our zone, and the two other guys had changed," White said when reached by phone in Montreal. "I ended up making a decent play, made an outlet pass to Metro (Glen Metropolit) and he gave it (Andrei) Kostitsyn, and he went down and scored when I had made the change.

"I got on the bench and the puck went in the net."

A milestone point but no positive tick on the plus-minus rating.

"Yeah, that's a little different and a little awkward, but I'll take it," White said with a chuckle.

Still, what a great way to start your career. White, who spent four seasons with the WHL's Calgary Hitmen, made his NHL debut last week, and helped set up the first goal in a 2-1 shootout win over the Boston Bruins. Oddly enough, he didn't get the puck from the commemorative play.

"I don't know if you get the puck for your first assist. I kept my stick from it," he said. "I think it's the first goal when they do something with the puck. Hopefully, I get that soon."

Tonight would be as good a time as any for the 21-year-old from Brandon, who was drafted 66th overall in 2006.

After all, Calgary was home for all those years, so netting his first tally against the Flames would add a special touch.

"It'll be exciting to face them," said the 6-foot, 193-lb., centre. "I watched a lot of Calgary Flames hockey for four years of my life and I'm familiar with the guys they have. It's going to be great to play against them."

Of course, these days, everything about his career is great. A second year pro, White spent all of last season with AHL Hamilton and collected 11 goals and 29 points in 80 games. He caught a bit of fire in the playoffs with three goals and four points in a six-game post-season run.

Still, the summons came as a bit of a surprise.

"It was a big shock to me," said White, who was making himself lunch when the call display on his phone said "Centre Bell."

"I was playing hard and focusing on my team. I'm trying to run with it and have some fun.

"It's been a lot of fun. I've been trying to play simple, play hard and do what I can to help the team. So far we have a win and a tough loss."

White played on a line with Tom Pyatt and Kostitsyn in his first game and most of his second -- Saturday's loss to Tampa -- but received something of a promotion when he skated with Kostitsyn and Tomas Plekanec for the final frame.

"That was fun. We ended up having a pretty good game," he said. "I was playing every third shift in the third period that game. Not any powerplay or penalty kill time, but a regular shift. That's all I can ask for, and more."

About the only drawback is the fact his family hasn't been able to witness his play.

"They've had to buy RDS, so they're watching me on that," he said of the French-language version of TSN. "I don't know how long I'll be here. I could be here until tomorrow or a month or whatever. I don't want to make plans, be focused on hockey. When they can make a trip, they'll do it."

RANDY.SPORTAK@SUNMEDIA.CA


Videos

Photos