02/05/2014 10:15 AM
In the game of ice hockey, people within and around the game are always talking about the importance of finding solid “two-way” players. A two-way player has a strong handle on the offensive aspects of the game as well as the defensive aspects. When you hear the words “two-way” put together, it is usually referring to forwards for the most part, but not in this case for Portland Pirates defenseman Daine Todd. Todd is listed as a defenseman and has played the majority of his games on the point this year, but in the past he has played a lot more forward, and Ray Edwards has moved the Alberta native up front a few times this year as well.
Todd got his first crack at playing in the American Hockey League shortly following the conclusion of his Senior year at the University of New Brunswick. After signing an amateur tryout contract with the Texas Stars, Todd played in two games for the team. You may be asking yourself, how did Todd go from playing all the way up in New Brunswick to down in Texas? All the credit for that can go directly to the coach. The Head Coach at the time was Willie Desjardins, Todd’s former coach from when he played for the Medicine Hat Tigers. Willie must have seen something in his former captain.
“That was a while ago but it’s always a great experience to take on a leadership role like that,” said Todd. “ I definitely gained some confidence from the role. I was very lucky to have been chosen to be a captain there, and I had some good years there that really helped push me to get to that next level.”
In four-plus years with the Medicine Hat Tigers, Todd tallied just over 150 total points, numbers that helped him make the leap to the next level and take his game to the University of New Brunswick.
“I chose New Brunswick because they have always had such a good team, and a strong tradition of winning. When I got there I wasn’t surprised by the rest of the talent on the team, and I was lucky enough to win three national championships there. It was just a good group of guys who all wanted to continue to play hockey after they were done in school, which really helped push you even more as a player.”
Following his career at the University of New Brunswick, Todd played in two games for the Texas Stars in the AHL. Todd didn’t tally a point in either game, but the tryout helped him land an AHL deal with the Phoenix Coyotes, and ultimately a spot on the Portland Pirates roster.
In his first year with the Pirates, Todd has appeared in 37 games, both as a forward and a defenseman, tallying 22 points off of 2 goals and 20 assists. To this day, Todd still gives a lot of credit to his old coach in the WHL.
“Willie Desjardins has definitely been the one coach who has helped me out the most. He was the head coach when I was at Medicine Hat, and then became the head coach for the Texas Stars where he actually gave me a chance there in a couple games, and I got to really feel out the American Hockey League in those games and see what it was about. I owe a lot to him, back when I was in Medicine Hat I had a bunch shoulder issues and he stuck with me and believed in me. He has been a real good coach for me”
Along with the great coaches that Todd has got to learn from throughout his career, he says that he also enjoys all of the different players that he has got to play with as well. In his first season with the Portland Pirates, you can definitely see 27-year-old becoming more confident in his roles, no matter what he is asked to do.
Get to know #3 Daine Todd:
Birthdate: January 10, 1987
Favorite NHL player past or present: Joe Sakic, Colorado Avalanche
Favorite Hockey team growing up: Winnipeg Jets
Favorite non-hockey sport to play: Golf
Favorite vacation spot: Whitefish, Montana