Emergency goalie David Ayres headed to Carolina for curtain call


Watching the game Saturday was David Ayres, 42, who most often is on the ice as the Zamboni driver for Toronto's AHL team, per the News & Observer.

Every NHL team has a player like Ayres listed for emergency purposes-a backup-backup goaltender, who doesn't expect to play, but wins the privilege of sitting on the bench and wearing a real jersey with his name on the back.

"Regardless of what level I've been at, it's always nice once you're through that and know what your group is". "Then I think I blanked them". It's very rare for National Hockey League; a pro team hasn't called on their emergency-backup goalie or "EBUG" since 2018.

Toronto is 1-4 in their last 5 road games and 3-9 in their last 12 games as an underdog while the over is 5-2 in their last 7 games against a team with a winning record. "That's why you do this, you'll see when you're done". The arena maintenanceman/Zamboni driver has been the emergency goalie-in-waiting at Scotiabank Arena for the past three seasons. He figured his career was over, at the time he'd advanced far enough to play for a minor league team in Laredo, Texas.

The 42-year-old is the on-call goalie in the area and was available to play as the third-choice goalie for either side, should they need him. He suited up and promptly stopped eight of the 10 shots from Toronto that he faced and earned the win, a 6-3 Hurricanes triumph.

Ayres has overcome health problems. "I thought I'd never be nervous if this ever happened, but as you could tell, I couldn't stop a puck in the second". It might draw some criticism to say I don't know, but I am not going to come up and bulls- and tell you I have some magical solution.

The jeers continued on a Leafs power play later in the period and got louder as the period wore on, with some fans chanting "Let's Go Raptors!" as the final minutes ticked down. We can't waver when things don't go well.

"But I have to thank David". Arizona took a 3-1 lead less than six minutes into the 2nd before Ondrej Palat and Brayden Point tied the game for the Lightning with goals 1:26 apart. "What a memory for him". Just to show how out of place he seemed, Ayres was wearing Leafs trousers and a Marlies helmet.

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The Canes even changed their Twitter bio in tribute to Ayres.

"I wasn't sure if they were cheering because I was going in, and they're like, 'oh, this is an easy win for Toronto, ' or if they were cheering because I was wearing my Leaf's gear", he said.

He had some knowledge of Leaf shooters from practice, which Keefe suspected might have eased his nerves. I couldn't sleep for the first night. He psyched me out. I think everyone here can imagine how that would have been too.

"I wish it had been champagne but we didn't have any", Staal said.

Ayres' wife, Sarah, who tweeted on the weekend "I am the happiest, proudest woman on the planet because my human got to live out his ultimate dream." added Monday.

"Is she still alive?" laughed Ayres. 'Once in a lifetime, I'll take it'.

"The reality is, because of the way that things have gone, we started to get some interest in him", Dubas explained.