Journeyman goaltender Zach Fucale will get his first NHL start tonight for the Capitals after playing for 14 different teams across the QMJHL, ECHL, AHL, DEL, and NHL. Fucale is in his eighth year pro after being selected 36th overall by the Montreal Canadiens in the 2013 NHL Draft.
“It’s been quite the journey for me,” Fucale said on Wednesday. “Been to a lot of different destinations, lot of different leagues, games, Europe and back. A lot of stuff has happened.”
Many of those clubs have noticed Fucale’s big milestone and are very excited for him.
QMJHL | Halifax Mooseheads (2011-15)
F-U-C-A-L-E 👏👏👏👏👏👏👏 https://t.co/fX14FHSubD
— Halifax Mooseheads (@HFXMooseheads) November 11, 2021
ECHL | Fort Wayne Komets (2018-19)
— Fort Wayne Komets (@FWKomets) November 11, 2021
ECHL | Orlando Solar Bears (2019-20)
— Orlando Solar Bears (@OrlandoHockey) November 11, 2021
AHL | Hershey Bears (2020-21)
— Hershey Bears (@TheHersheyBears) November 11, 2021
Former Fucale teams that haven’t tweeted yet, but may later, include the QMJHL’s Québec Remparts (2014-15), the NHL’s Montreal Canadiens (2015-2018), the AHL’s Laval Rocket (2017-18), the DEL’s EHC Red Bull München (2019-20), the AHL’s Syracuse Crunch (2019-20), and the South Carolina Stingrays (2020-21).
Two of Fucale’s former teams, the St. John’s IceCaps (2015-17) and the ECHL’s Brampton Beast (2016-18), have folded since he played for them.
Fucale, according to the AP’s Stephen Whyno, is also the final player from Canada’s gold medal-winning 2015 World Junior Championship team to play in an NHL game. That team included names like Connor McDavid, Brayden Point, and Madison Bowey.
Zach Fucale is the final member of Canada's 2015 gold medal-winning world junior team to play in an NHL game. He has dressed but not played. Every other player on that roster has at least one game. https://t.co/lOlgWK6Tgv
— Stephen Whyno (@SWhyno) November 11, 2021
Fucale earned the start with Vitek Vanecek out due to injury and Ilya Samsonov unable to reign in the starter’s job once again. Last season, Fucale posted a 9-2-0 record with a 1.80 goals-against average and a .932-save percentage as part of the AHL’s best team. He has followed that up since with a 3-0-2 record with a 1.73 goals-against average and a .933 save percentage this season.
Like the NHL French website said: perseverance paid off for Zach.
— LNH (@LNH_FR) November 11, 2021
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