As the LA Kings faced-off against the Nashville Predators on Saturday, Dion Phaneuf hit the ice for his 1,000th NHL game.
And it was in the same building he was drafted in.
"It's been incredible and I'm very lucky to do what I do and I'm very lucky to do it for as long as I have, and I want to continue to do it, so I owe a lot to the game," Phaneuf said to LA Kings Insider. "It's been great to me and I've enjoyed the journey."
He credits his lengthy career to his various support systems that include family, coaching staff, training staff, equipment managers and teammates throughout his journey.
"It's a special bond with your teammates and the training staff."
Phaneuf is apparently a bit superstitious, so his family wasn't in attendance at the Bridgestone Arena. But they were surely watching from home.
"My parents were in this building when I was drafted, so it's kind of cool," he said to LA Kings Insider . "I was talking to my dad on the way over and he said, 'It's pretty cool you're playing there.'"
Even though Phaneuf is known to be a hard-hitter on the ice, his professionalism and kindness has gained him the opposite reputation off the ice.
In Calgary, where he was drafted, he started giving tickets to children who were in the hospital. His charity work later turned into "Phaneuf's Friends" while he was playing in Toronto.
"Phaneuf's Friends was something that to me was a very important thing and we're in a position to give back and to allow younger children, children that are in the hospital fighting a much bigger fight than we go through playing this great game," said Phaneuf.
"So just to get them out of the hospital and see a smile on their face meant everything to me."
Phaneuf will be honored for reaching the 1,000 Game milestone at STAPLES Center on Wednesday as the Kings face the Colorado Avalanche.