Hendrix Lapierre participated in the NHLPA Rookie Showcase at MedStar Capitals Iceplex.
Not only did the 20-year-old rookie reveal the first real-life example of the Capitals’ new jersey ad, but he also dished more on his experience playing with his childhood idol, Alex Ovechkin, last season.
“It was great,” a smiling Lapierre said to the media, including RMNB. “Yeah, he’s my teammate, but he’s still my idol pretty much. I grew up watching him. As you guys saw, I had a poster of him and a bunch of jerseys and stuff. Being with him on a daily basis for 30 [days] last year was awesome.”
Hendrix Lapierre on what it was like playing with his idol, Alex Ovechkin, last season. pic.twitter.com/eymztvNwwP
— Ian Oland (@ianoland) September 6, 2022
In fact, Lapierre and Ovechkin both had important personal milestones during their first NHL game playing together. Ovechkin moved into fifth on the NHL’s all-time goal-scoring list (732) while Lapierre scored his first NHL goal after receiving a sensational dish by TJ Oshie. Ovechkin and Lapierre then shared a moment together on the bench.
As Capitals’ PA announcer Wes Johnson announced Lappy’s goal, Ovechkin patted the prospect center on the helmet to congratulate him. Lapierre appeared star-struck. After the game, Lapierre called the experience “a perfect night.”
“[Ovechkin] is such a good guy,” Lapierre said. “He’s just very very passionate about the game which is super impressive considering the fact that he’s beaten pretty much every record he had to. I know he wants to get Gretzky, but he’s just so passionate about the game. He loves to have fun. I think it’s very good for me to see that these guys like to have fun but at the same time, when it’s business time, they’re really out there.
“For me, it was a dream come true literally when I had a chance to play with him and he’s been very, very good to me,” he added. “I think he’s coming in soon and I hope I’ll talk to him in the next couple days.”
Ovechkin is reportedly set to arrive back in DC early this week. Lapierre is one of about 20 players that is participating in informal skates at MCI.
As for the Rookie Showcase, Lapierre spent most of his time taking photos and signing autographs for Upper Deck, the NHL’s trading card partner. Lapierre had another run-in with his idol while doing promotional work for the company.
“We had to do a pack opening yesterday and I actually pulled an Ovechkin (card) and a Nic Dowd as well,” Lapierre said. “So I got two teammates. That was pretty fun. Just opening the pack and seeing Ovechkin, I was like ‘Wow what are the odds?'”
Headline photo: Alan Dobbins/RMNB
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