‘I try not to be too starstruck’: Bruins rookie makes his NHL debut alongside his childhood idol – then gets a standing ovation from the crowd AND his parents for getting into a fist fight
- Boston Bruins rookie Trent Frederic made his debut Tuesday against Winnipeg
- About a dozen years earlier, the St. Louis native had his picture taken alongside Blues center David Backes, who now plays with Frederic on the same Bruins line
- Frederic, 20, got a standing ovation after fighting Winnipeg’s Brandon Tanev
- Afterwards Frederic’s parents were seen whiffing on an attempted high five
- Growing up, Frederic had been friends with Blues legend Keith Tkachuck’s sons Matthew and Brady, who now play for Calgary and Ottawa, respectively
- It was through that connection that Frederic met Backes, his favorite player
- The Bruins suffered a 4-3 shootout loss to the visiting Jets
Boston Bruins rookie Trent Frederic had a memorable NHL debut against Winnipeg on Tuesday as he played alongside his childhood idol David Backes and received the first fighting major of his young career.
Not only was he rewarded with a standing ovation from the crowd at Boston’s TD Garden, but Frederic’s parents Bob and Gaye were seen celebrating on television after the brawl by trying – and failing – to connect on a high five.
Unfortunately for Winnipeg’s Brandon Tanev, the 20-year-old Frederic had no problem connecting on about 10 or 11 punches before dropping his opponent to the ice.
‘I wasn’t really going in trying to get one tonight but it just happened,’ Frederic told reporters of the fight afterward.
As a nine-year old in St. Louis, Trent Frederic (near left, far right) idolized Blues forward David Backes (far left, near right). A dozen years later, the two are now teammates in Boston
Although his parents whiffed on an attempted high five, the 20-year-old Trent Frederic (left) had no problem connecting on about 11 punches before dropping Brandon Tanev to the ice
Frederic received a standing ovation after the first fighting major of his NHL career
Frederic and Backes actually played on the same line Tuesday night, roughly a dozen years after the 20-year-old St. Louis native had his picture taken alongside Backes, who played for the Blues at the time. Frederic was just nine-years old during the picture, whereas Backes was just beginning his NHL career.
Trent Frederic and Brandon Tanev (right) separated from the pack for a one-on-one bout that earned Frederic a standing ovation from Boston fans – including his parents
‘I try not to be too starstruck to him,’ Frederic told NHL.com. ‘But I’m sure he has a clue.
‘Growing up, in St. Louis, he was the best player, so who doesn’t want to play like the best player from your hometown team?’ Frederic continued.
‘Hopefully I can live up to that, or something close to that.’
Growing up, Frederic had been friends with Blues legend Keith Tkachuck’s sons Matthew and Brady, who now play for the Calgary Flames and the Ottawa Senators, respectively.
It was through that connection that Frederic was introduced to Backes over a decade before the two would become teammates.
‘It’s certainly humbling to see a kid — I think he was 9 when we took that picture — but … from then to 12 years later, playing on a line with the kid, that’s a small world,’ Backes told NHL.com. ‘That’s pretty cool.
‘He’s a good kid with a good head on his shoulders,’ Backes continued. ‘If I can give him a little direction, just let him do his thing, I think it’ll be a successful debut for him.’
Not only was he rewarded with a standing ovation from the crowd at Boston’s TD Garden, but Frederic’s parents Bob and Gaye were seen celebrating on television after the brawl by trying – and failing – to connect on a high five
Frederic’s new Bruins teammates cheered him on during his second-period fist fight
The 6foot3 Frederic was recently called up from the Bruins’ minor league affiliate in Providence.
He made his presence known in the second period of Tuesday’s loss by fighting Winnipeg’s Brandon Tanev.
The two separated from the pack for a one-on-one bout that earned Frederic a standing ovation from Boston fans – including his parents, who were shown attempting to slap a high give in the stands as Frederic headed to the locker room.
As for the game, the Jets’ Kyle Connor scored back-to-back goals 34 seconds apart in the third period and delivered the only goal in a shootout as Winnipeg rallied behind goalie Connor Hellebuyck to beat Boston, 4-3.
Patrice Bergeron scored twice for the Bruins. David Pastrnak had a goal and an assist, and Marchand assisted on all three goals for Boston in its first game in 10 days.
Trent Frederic (right) made his NHL debut alongside his childhood idol, David Backes (left)