Plenty of Preds have done it before him.
Ryan Johansen, Kyle Turris, Colton Sissons, Dan Hamhuis, Matt Irwin - all hail from the province of British Columbia, and most grew up within a short drive of Vancouver. Each of them has had that first NHL game in their hometown before, a special moment for anyone who makes it all the way.
Indeed, a game against the Canucks is always a bit of a homecoming for many on the Nashville roster, and tonight in Vancouver, Preds defenseman Dante Fabbro becomes the next in line to step on the NHL ice in the city he calls home.
Born in nearby Coquitlam and raised as a hockey player at the Burnaby Winter Club outside of Vancouver, Fabbro knows the goal tonight is to help his team finish off their four-game trip with a win, first and foremost. However, he can't help but think back to the years not so long ago spent growing up in one of the most beautiful cities in the world and learning the game.
Tonight, instead of watching the players fly back and forth at Rogers Arena, he'll be one of them.
"It'll be an exciting time," Fabbro said Tuesday morning. "I got to spend some time with the family, and they're pretty jazzed up to come watch tonight, so hopefully we can put on a show and maybe get a win. It's exciting times, and I'm just looking forward to getting out there."
As with any hometown visit, Fabbro will have a few fans in the crowd tonight. His father, Steve, has taken care of the legwork. The blueliner estimates he'll have more than 100 friends and family members in attendance this evening with plenty of Preds Gold being sported among the group.
It'll be business as usual once the puck drops, but Fabbro wouldn't mind giving his cheering section a reason to jump out of their chairs.
"Definitely coming home, you want to impress and play well," Fabbro said. "We had a good couple last days, and everyone is pretty anxious and ready to get out there and perform tonight."