NEW YORK -- Andrew Ference grew up just outside of Edmonton. His formative hockey years were spent watching the Edmonton Oilers cement their dynasty in the late 1980s. So when Ference had an opportunity to sign with his hometown team and play in the arena where he grew up watching from the stands, he jumped on it, calling it a fairytale.
The fairytale will soon be adding a new character, and Ference, like many of his teammates and Oilers fans, isn't hiding his excitement.
The Oilers won the 2015 NHL Draft Lottery this past Saturday for what has been one of the most hyped drafts in recent memory. The presumptive first pick, forward Connor McDavid, could become the next great hope for Oilers hockey.
"The thing about playing hockey in Canada, it's not just a big day for me personally but for our city," said Ference, who said he watched the draft lottery show on TV. "Our city the last few years has been miserable. We've lost way too much. We haven't been competitive enough.
"To have that and the positivity that comes with that, the anticipation that comes with that, you go out, and you talk to friends in the city and people that are fans of the team and there's genuine excitement. That's good."