Luke Opilka came very close to quitting hockey before realizing his true calling as a goaltender during an open skate at a friend's birthday party.
"I was never too good a player; the only goal I ever scored was on my own net," Opilka said. "I really thought I actually scored a goal so I began celebrating. I was probably a mite [8 years old] then and I probably should have known better, but I didn't."
What he did learn was that playing defense was not a good idea for him.
"I tried goaltender at my friend's birthday party and just loved it, so I stuck with it from there," he said.