The toughest question Kellan Lain faced Monday after the Canucks practiced at Rogers Arena didn’t come from a writer or reporter.
It came from Eddie Lack.
“How do you manage to fight with all that hair,” Lack laughed. “I mean it’s a sick flow, but how do you see anything?”
Lain laughed, Lack laughed.
Saturday night, however, was no laughing matter.
When Lain, a 24-year-old from Oakville, Ontario, made his NHL debut for the Canucks against the Calgary Flames Saturday, he was expecting to see more than one shift and two-seconds of ice time.
Then again, he wasn’t expecting to set an NHL-record for the fastest fight to start an NHL career.
The Flames iced their tough guys to start Saturday’s tilt, the Canucks responded with their bruisers and two-seconds into the game, the ice was scattered with equipment and fists were flying.
Lain fought Kevin Westgarth, Dale Weise took on Blair Jones, Tom Sestito dropped the mitts with Brian McGrattan, Kevin Bieksa bruised Ladislav Smid and Jason Garrison tussled with Chris Butler.
That’s some way for the 6-foot-6, 210-pound giant to make your NHL debut.
“It wasn’t how I pictured it would be, but it was exciting,” smiled Lain. “Obviously that’s something I’ll never forget, I’ve never been a part of something like that, especially in your first shift in the NHL.
“That’s hockey, everything happens fast and you never really know what’s going to happen. It’s part of the game and it is what it is, and it’s kind of a bonding experience as well with a new team.”
Lain’s parents and his older brother made the trip to Vancouver and were in the crowd for the game; the Lains flew home Monday, unfortunately, so watching Kellan play live will have to wait.
They'll be watching on TV Tuesday night when the Canucks take on the Edmonton Oilers. Fingers crossed Lain at least doubles his ice time.
“I hope I get a chance to play in that game, I’m just enjoying the experience right now.”