Mr Jay Beagle as far as I can tell, is probably in as much love with the game now, as he was when he first laced up his skates for the Calgary Royals fifteen years ago. I’ve got to meet Jay three times, once at a Caps Kids Club signing when he was injured, and twice I have run into him at Kettler Capitals IcePlex. All three times, he seemed genuinely happy to be where he was, and more than happy to interact with me and my son.
At the Kids-Club signing, at the end, his handler was rushing him to the elevator in the 400 level at Capital One Arena. Beagle, effortlessly walked around his handler back to a group of kids that hadn’t got a chance to meet him. For a solid five minutes (now of his own time) he talked with the group of young Caps fans, taking photos, and interacting with them. Something you don’t see every day with a professional athlete. At Kettler he called my son over too him, took his questions, took photos with him, and was extremely accommodating.
I can venture to say I am not the only one who has shared his kind interactions. Off the ice, he seems to be a class act.
On the ice does he have the most points? Not at all. Does have a season leading goals, assists, or plus minus average? Not at all. Jay Beagle does have heart though. Every shift he seems to take on like it’s his last. He goes into the corners and digs out the puck, usually to set up a play, almost every single time. Jay Beagle will most likely never make the high-end contract, or have his name in the Hockey Hall Of Fame, but if you’ve ever interacted with him, you know he’s won over your vote for it.
Last year (2016-17) according to Hockey Reference, Beagle had thirteen goals and seventeen assists all season long. For this household it doesn’t matter, he tries. Every. Single. Time. Mr. Beagle has become a favorite in our house because no matter what line he is placed on, no matter where the game is, he won’t give up. If that is something that a young hockey player or fan can emulate, or take from him as a life lesson, or a goal – then I think Jay Beagle has done more than his share.
NHL players come and go, injuries can eliminate careers almost instantaneously. For those that do last as long as he has, why not try to make the game better, the fan base better, or humankind for that much just a tad bit better. Mr. Jay Beagle, in my opinion, on and off the ice has tried. He won’t be getting the Marice “Rocket Richard” Trophy or the Hart Memorial Trophy anytime soon, however to me and my family he is the “People’s Capital” trophy winner every season and he has earned it with our votes.