Blyth native receives awards as OHL's top captain - June 15, 2017
BY SHAWN LOUGHLIN
Blyth native Alex Peters has been named the best captain in the Ontario Hockey League for his work leading the Flint Firebirds in the 2016/2017 season, receiving his award last week.
Peters was the recipient of the Mickey Renaud Captain’s Trophy last Thursday night at a special ceremony held at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto.
A selection committee chooses the winner of the award every year, honouring the OHL team captain who leads both on and off the ice and has a passion for hockey as well as his community. These attributes had been demonstrated by Renaud over the course of his OHL career until his untimely death in 2008, the result of a rare heart condition.
The award has been presented every year since the 2008/2009 season and past winners include Chris Terry, now of the Montreal Canadiens, Ryan Ellis of the Nashville Predators and former London Knight Max Domi, now of the Arizona Coyotes.
“I wasn’t really expecting to win it, so I was obviously very happy when I did,” Peters said in an interview with The Citizen.
Peters says that an assistant coach with the Firebirds used to play with Renaud and he still speaks very highly of his character and impact, both on and off the ice, to this day.
“To receive this award in his name is a tremendous honour. Having my name even associated with his – I feel very privileged,” he said.
Peters is the first captain in the Firebirds’ history, taking charge of the team in the 2015/2016 season after it relocated from Plymouth. In his time with the team, Peters has been recognized for his mature form of leadership and has been lauded by fans for spearheading a number of initiatives in the community, visiting local hospitals and founding a food drive and a reading program.
Ahead of the 2016/2017 season, a video of Peters making a surprise visit to one of the team’s biggest fans for her birthday went viral. It was another example of Peters making a difference in the Flint community.
“I am very honoured to receive the Mickey Renaud Captain’s Trophy,” Peters said by way of a press release issued by the team. “It is a prestigious award, with special meaning named in memory of a great person. I would like to thank the Firebirds’ coaching staff and my fellow teammates for believing in me as captain, because the way I see it, we had a room full of leaders that all stepped up when they needed to. I would also like to say thank you to the Renaud family for giving us an example like Mickey to try and live up to.”
Last season Peters scored 10 goals and had 24 assists, ending the season with a plus/minus of +24. He led the team to its first-ever playoff appearance, scoring two goals and one assist in his team’s five playoff games.
Peters is a Dallas Stars draft pick – the same system his brother Justin is currently in – but spent last season in the OHL as an over-ager. He has now committed to play for St. Mary’s in the Canadian university system, where his other brother, Anthony, played for several seasons.
He’ll be spending his summer in London, sharpening his skills and fitness five days a week ahead of the next season’s camp in the fall.