Oilers players and coaches spent all day on Monday at Canadian Forces Base Wainwright taking part in training and team-building.
“Yesterday was just an incredible, inspiring, once-in-a-lifetime day with the military,” Head Coach Dallas Eakins said. “It was an incredible day and something that our players and our staff will never forget.”
The team took part in several exercises including navigating an obstacle course with a firearm, taking part in time trials by driving tanks and helping navigate military personnel through obstacles.
“We navigated an obstacle course with a firearm, with bombs and gunfire and everything going on around us,” Eakins said. “We had to work together to get through it. We were doing time trials where we individually drove tanks through a course. We had to help navigate the driver, a military driver of a tank, through a course where communication is key. We were his eyes, and if we didn’t tell he what to do he would simply go off course. We each got to fire three rounds of a tank, and I mean actually shoot that sucker, which was unbelievable.”
The team also learned about teamwork and leadership.
“We spoke about it after and if I was to ask any of the military or our team right now to name a great team, name a great team, what would you say? San Antonio Spurs or the Lakers in their day, or the Bulls or the Patriots, the Seahawks," Eakins said. "That’s what somebody would say, but the greatest team is the military. It’s simple, there’s no argument. It’s amazing how they rely on each other and how they’re committed to a cause, committed to each other, they’re selfless, they’re disciplined, they’re everything you want. When we look at each other in the room, we need each other and I think yesterday was a great lesson that we’re not asking much of each other in our room. The military asks a lot and they get it."