Although his 34 games played during the 2014-15 season technically render him a sophomore, many would consider Nick Shore
a relatively new face with the LA Kings, including Shore himself.
The second of four boys in the Denver, Colorado-based Shore family, Nick began playing hockey when his older brother Drew, who currently plays for the Calgary Flames organization, took an interest in the sport.
“My brother was the first one to start, I think he got an Avs jersey or a stick for Christmas when we were really young and it was something random, but it sort of led him to want to start playing, and of course being the younger brother, you want to do whatever your older brother is doing, right? One thing led to another and we all ended up playing somehow,” says Shore, who has never competed against any of his brothers.
Shore has one younger brother playing college hockey and his youngest brother, who is only 16, also plays and still lives in the Denver area with Mom and Dad. All four Shore brothers remain close and talk on a daily basis, and even though he admits that Mom might call a little too often, Nick is grateful for his hockey parents.
“You really don’t realize how many sacrifices your parents make, especially when you’re younger. For us, having four boys, whether it’s a 6 a.m. practice or a game, I’m sure they’ve seen way too many games and been in a lot of rinks growing up,” says Shore about his parents, who have been in LA once already this season. “Looking back on it, I’m really fortunate to have them and I can’t thank them enough.”
Growing up in Denver, Shore was a fan of the Colorado Avalanche, and his favorite player to watch was the Avs’ Peter Forsberg.
“He was by and large my favorite guy to watch when I was younger. I think it definitely helped that he was playing for the Avs,” says Shore, who says the fact that he wears the same number, 21, that Forsberg did is only a coincidence.
One of Shore’s best memories as an Avs fan was when Ray Bourque won his Stanley Cup.
“It was so cool, right when they won it, [Joe] Sakic handed the Cup right to Bourque – everybody remembers that, it was an emotional moment even if you didn’t have any connection at all,” says Shore, who was only eight years-old at the time. “It was just something that everyone was just happy to see and it was cool being a part of that in the Denver area. Everyone was going crazy, so it was fun.”
The Shore family had their second NHLer when Shore was drafted by Los Angeles in the third round of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. He has been in the Kings’ system since the 2013-14 season when he played 68 games for the Manchester Monarchs.
Shore doesn’t consider himself a superstitious athlete, and there isn’t much to his pre-game routine aside from the morning skate, a nap and a meal. He does put his left skate on first, but that’s the only constant in his dressing sequence.
Not having much experience in LA prior to playing for the Kings, and not knowing anyone aside from Monarchs teammates, Shore considers himself lucky to be with such a good group of guys.
“The cool thing about this team is everyone gets along. Being relatively newer to the team, everyone is there to help you out and support you and I think there’s a great group of guys here,” says the 23-year-old Shore. “You’ll see different groups and things like that, but everyone gets along really well and that makes it great, especially at the rink, but away from the rink also.”
Away from the rink, Shore currently lives with teammate Tyler Toffoli, whom he insists would give him great review as a roommate. He goes out with his teammates regularly and likes to stay active, frequenting the beach and the South Bay area during down time.
Although he’s never spent an entire year in SoCal, he imagines that although he absolutely loves the weather, there may come a time Shore will come to miss the seasons and the snow. But for now, he is enjoying the warmer weather.
“It’s nice to be able to throw flip-flops on in the morning. I’m a flip-flops kind of guy,” says Shore, who has no problem watching the Broncos play in the snow while he’s able to wear flip-flops.
On the entertainment front, Shore is currently watching ‘House of Cards,’ and he’s a big fan of ‘Homeland.’ His movie taste is in anything but horror films, and recently he was excited to view the new James Bond and Hunger Games flicks. Shore’s music taste is even wider than his cinema spectrum as he admittedly listens to “everything” and isn’t a super fan of any genre. He did disclose that the last concert he saw was the Zac Brown Band at the Hollywood Bowl, a group that he’s also seen at Red Rocks Amphitheatre, a unique outdoor venue in Colorado.
Although Shore has never had any pets, he’s considering an English Bulldog, a breed of dog he loves.
If and when this does happen, he’ll fit in even more in Los Angeles.