Ty Lewis, 21, signed as a free agent with the Colorado Avalanche on Oct. 3, 2017 after impressing the team as an amateur tryout at the 2017 training camp.
The Brandon, Manitoba, native spent the 2018-19 campaign with the Colorado Eagles of the American Hockey League and the ECHL Utah Grizzlies. In his first professional season, Lewis amassed 19 points (eight goals, 11 assists) in 51 games with the Eagles and registered 13 points (five goals, eight assists) with the Grizzlies. He also appeared in five playoff contests with the Utah, tallying three assists.
Prior to 2018-19, the 5-foot-11, 180-pound left wing played three seasons (2015-2018) with his hometown Brandon Wheat Kings in the Western Hockey League. Lewis recorded 191 points (84 goals, 107 assists) in 190 regular-season games and appeared in 36 playoff games, finishing with 18 points (eight goals, 10 assists). The forward was also a member of the Wheat Kings' 2015-16 WHL championship team.
Lewis recently talked with ColoradoAvalanche.com about playing with the Brandon Wheat Kings and the upcoming season.
How has fellow Brandon, Manitoba, native Matt Calvert helped you with the process of becoming a pro?
"Matty has always been a role model for me growing up in Brandon and with the Wheat Kings. Someone to look up to, someone who I try and play like. Everyone likes him around the town. He's a great guy, a great leader, and I just try to take as much as I can from him."
What was the experience like playing three-plus seasons in your hometown with the Wheat Kings?
"It's cool. There's lots of family and friends there that come to watch, and a lot of people don't get a chance to do it. It's special. I'm thankful to have the chance that Brandon gave me and drafting me there. I enjoyed my time there, I will always remember the friends I made there and the time I spent there."
How would you describe winning the WHL championship in 2016?
"It's special, I mean winning is the best thing you can do in hockey. Winning a championship is very special to me, and it's something that I will remember the rest of my life. That's always the goal wherever you play is to try and win championships. We had a great group of guys there. I learned a lot, and I just try and take as much as I can from that experience."
What did you learn most from playing your first full professional season with the Eagles last year?
"[Head coach Greg] Cronin is a great coach. He taught me a lot, a lot of small stuff, in-fighting small area stuff. It's a bigger, faster game than junior was. It was a bit of an adjustment, coming into the second year now I'm a little more familiar with the ropes, little more comfortable with my surroundings. Hopefully just try and elevate my game and take the next step to try and make pro hockey."
How has your summer training been leading up to training camp?
"It was good, it was a busy summer. I feel like I had a good summer of training, I put a lot of work in to try and get size and strength going and I feel like I was able to do that. I think this is the biggest and strongest I've ever been. Hopefully that translates to the ice and have a good camp going forward."
What are you looking forward to the most in the upcoming season?
"I'm looking forward to playing again. I love the game, it's great being with your buddies here at rookie camp, seeing the guys from last year and hanging out with them again. We have a great group of guys here at the rookie tournament."
Do you remember how you got into playing hockey?
"My dad started me at a young age; he played in college up in Brandon for Brandon University. He's always been a big impact on me, coaching me. He runs a hockey school there so he's pretty familiar with the hockey community around Brandon, and he's definitely been a big impact on me."
Video: Avs prospect Ty Lewis after practice
What was your favorite hockey memory growing up?
"Probably winning the WHL championship. That's hard to beat. It was the first major championship that I won, and it's a grind playing in the playoffs like that. Just experiencing that is something that I'll take with me forever."
What is your favorite thing to do off the ice?
"I love to golf in the summer, that's the main hobby. Other than that, just hanging around with friends. I'm in the gym a lot."
Do you have any pregame routines?
"I follow the same routine for the most part. Nothing crazy, just tape my stick, same warmup. Not really a superstitious guy but try and keep it as light as I can and have fun when I'm at the rink."