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FEATURE: P.K. Subban Looks to Leave Legacy Both On and Off the Ice

FEATURE: P.K. Subban Looks to Leave Legacy Both On and Off the Ice

by Amanda Stein / NewJerseyDevils.com

For every big moment P.K. Subban has had on the ice in his NHL career, he has been a part of many bigger, more impactful ones off of it.

No matter the accolades he receives as a hockey player, those are not the ones he necessarily wishes to be remembered by. 

While with both the Montreal Canadiens and Nashville Predators, Subban made impacts off the ice that have left lasting marks on the two communities. Whether through monetary donations, spending time with underprivileged children, or just stopping on the street to play pick-up hockey with a couple young fans, Subban has done it all. 

Now on to his third NHL team, Subban doesn't appear to be slowing down and is looking forward to finding away to impact New Jersey.  

"When we're able to sit down with the front office and talk about things moving forward, I'm sure it will be definitely some initiative that we're going to get involved in," Subban said over a conference call on Sunday. "Community stuff is always important to me, it's very important to the New Jersey Devils and the organization, so along with not just myself but the rest of the players on the team, it's always a priority to be able to give back in the best way possible."

And when the time is right, you can expect big and creative things from Subban. 

The 30-year-old defenseman appears up for anything. Disguise himself as an old-man? Sure. Sing carols in the streets of Nashville? No problem. Spend the afternoon as a security guard? You bet. What Subban has up his sleeve next is always a surprise, but the one thing that is always certain is it will bring a smile to your face and joy into the lives of those less fortunate. 

In Montreal, Subban's philanthropy was first put on display in the winter of 2014. Disguising himself as 'Karl the Security Guard', Subban hosted local deserving children on a trip to the Montreal Canadiens practice facility, a day on the ice and eventually the grand reveal that their security guard was indeed P.K. himself. 

P.K.'s Holiday Surprise from PK Subban on Vimeo.

He would later pledge $10 million over seven years to the Montreal Children's Hospital. In the first year alone, through Subban's initiatives, more than two of the $10 million was raised. In his recognition, when you walk through the grand doors of the Children's Hospital in Montreal, built in 2015, the words 'P.K. Subban Atrium' greets you in big, bold letters. Just as big and bold as Subban's personality. 

Tweet from @amandacstein: Ladies and gentlemen, the PK Subban Atrium at the Montreal Children's Hospital. #HabsOn690 pic.twitter.com/tT8wXxhmRH

After his pledge, Subban toured the hospital to meet several of the families he would be impacting. Overcome with emotion, several of the parents experienced raw emotion while meeting Subban. After all, that is what Subban's efforts are all about. Creating an impact however he can.  

Tweet from @amandacstein: A remarkable moment. PK meeting the mother of a patient who breaks down in tears because of his support. #TSN690 pic.twitter.com/QGajhzuSr5

Subban fronted a Canada-wide campaign, teaming up with Air Canada for #CanadaCarols in 2015, a campaign that saw even Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau get involved at Subban's request. The initiative was launched in the winter of 2015 to benefit the Children's Miracle Network's pediatric hospitals across Canada.

Tweet from @JustinTrudeau: Challenge accepted and completed, @PKSubban1. Jingle all the way! #CanadaCarolshttps://t.co/VwXLTk0F46

Working and impacting the lives of children has clearly become a big part of who Subban is and the legacy he wants to leave wherever he goes. When he was traded to the Nashville Predators in 2016, he penned a letter to his friends at the Montreal Children's letting them know he would not be leaving them behind, despite being in Nashville. 

Tweet from @PKSubban1: I wanted my friends @HopitalChildren to know that I will never stop fundraising for them. So I wrote a letter...https://t.co/giImuJz4ou 

Subban returned to the Montreal Children's on a regular basis, sometimes even bringing along his Predators teammates. You can expect that Subban will continue to do the same while in Devils colors. Subban continues to host his annual summer hockey camp in both Montreal and Toronto. 

His efforts only grew bigger when he reached the Nashville Predators. Along with the organization, Subban created the 'Blueline Buddies,' an initiative where Subban hosted underprivileged youth at every home game, covering tickets and dinner for families while teaming up members of the Nashville youth with the Metro Nashville Police Department. 

Tweet from @PKSubban1: They���ve got the moves ���🏿Welcome to the #BluelineBuddies family Detective Danny Warren, Renee, Nakelan and Justin! @PredsNHL @PredsFoundation @PKSF1 pic.twitter.com/bnIkcKOlFz

"I got to be very familiar with a lot of kids in the community in Nashville,' Subban said. "Especially with the police officers and my 'Blueline Buddies' program and it's definitely something that I want to continue [in New Jersey]."

While in Nashville, he continued his 'Christmas Surprise' videos, caroling with patients of the Vanderbilt Center of Excellence in Sickle Cell Disease at Nashville's Vanderbilt Children's Hospital, handing out tickets to hockey games, disguised as an old man he's named Eddie and the invention of the 'Subban Sleigh.'

Watch: Youtube Video 

The 'Subban Sleigh' was extra unique. As it was Subban's first year in Nashville, he connected sick children from both the Montreal and Nashville area setting them up as "Pin-Pals," an effort to connect with his new community in Nashville and make sure the children he loves so dearly in Montreal were still a part of the process. 

Tweet from @PKSubban1: Here we go again with The Subban Sleigh! Happy Holidays! @rjosi90 @DierksBentley @PredsNHL @HopitalChildren @VUMCchildren #PinItForward pic.twitter.com/P1bklTTBkl

Now, the focus changes to New Jersey and the surrounding area. Subban has always emphasized his priority is on the ice.

"I don't think your focus as a hockey player or athlete can be anywhere else but how you want to impact the team on the ice or on the field or court. I'm still a hockey player, I still want to play another 8 to 10 years and play a long time and in that term."

All that P.K. does off the ice is complementary. 

"Everything I do is with a planned approach. My focus is on the ice and winning, but there will be plenty of opportunity to work with the team off the ice in the community and all those things. It's a huge market with a lot of people there and the team has a great presence." 

On Sunday, Subban talked about wanting to "make an entrance into the community" here in New Jersey. 

"Obviously in the Tri-City area we know what cops and first responders have done for people over the years and that's very, very important to me and it's important to highlight that," Subban said. "That's all I try to do with my personal team, is just highlight the great things that people are doing in the world and for people that are in an unfortunate position, to make that position more fortunate and try to make their lives better as best we can. So, I want to make sure whatever we do, we're aligned with the New Jersey Devils and how they do things."

And if his past is any indication, it will be quite grand and well worth the wait. 

Tweet from @HopitalChildren: .@PKSubban1 , The Children���s has a special something to say to you! / @PKSubban1 le Children a un message sp��cial pour toi! @PKSF1 pic.twitter.com/LM51wvPG9s 

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