J.T. Brown found a good night for "Fortnite." And an even better cause.
The Minnesota Wild forward is using his love for video games to raise money for the Hockey Is For Everyone initiative, playing the popular video game for 24 straight hours, kicking off the event with a two-hour charity game with fellow NHL players Brock Boeser, Johnny Gaudreau, Zach Werenski, Nick Bonino and Vladislav Namestnikov on Friday.
"The fans that show up up, they ask who else can play from around the League," Brown told NHL.com. "The idea just came up from the public asking if we could play in the same game together."
The NHL players will join a collection of randomly chosen Twitter users for the Fortnite Battle Royal. Brown will be soliciting donations via Twitch, both bits and subscriptions, and will send all proceeds to the Hockey Is For Everyone initiative, which uses the sport and the NHL's influence to drive social change and foster more inclusive communities.
The event will commemorate the first anniversary of his streaming. His marathon session starts with the celebrity game Friday at 8 p.m. ET, and he'll play for the 22 hours after.
"The 24-hour stream is a benchmark of streaming," Brown said. "That was something I always wanted to do; for my one-year mark I wanted to see how much I was able to raise for Hockey Is For Everyone."
He often alludes to his wife Lexi's dissatisfaction with him playing video games online, but she's on board with his gaming for 24 straight hours mostly because it's for a good cause.
"I think right away she was like, 'C'mon, really?'" Brown said. "But it's a good idea for charity, I think that's the best aspect. Obviously, I'm using that 24 hours to build as many donations as possible for Hockey Is For Everyone."
Brown, who previously played for the Anaheim Ducks and Tampa Bay Lightning, is becoming big part of the "Fortnite" community, and he and some of the sphere's hockey-loving gamers have developed a kinship in real life even because of the game.
"You get to connect with people on a different level," he said. "There's a guy that's a regular in my stream, and I saw him at one of the events I was doing in Tampa. He said, 'My name is so and so and my stream name is this,' and I was like, 'You should've just said [his stream name] to begin with.' I felt like I already knew him because of that before we actually even met just based on conversation."
Brown uses the community as a way to interact with fans and to give back.
"I got partnered with Twitch to use that for a way to give back to charity and do something I love to do and pretty much have done my whole life and be able to do that as a platform to give back," Brown said. "It's awesome that we can do that: play video games and donate the money."