This is one of my favorite pictures of Alex Plante. It was taken after a Calgary Hitmen game at the Saddledome and despite his surroundings he defiantly adorns the colours of the villainous NHL team up the road. Talk about being behind enemy lines!
There is a lot of pressure that goes along with being a first round pick, even more so when you're taken by a Canadian team because you're under the microscope of the fanbase from draft day on.
Plante was Edmonton's second choice at the 2007 NHL Entry Draft and its been a selection that Oiler fans have scrutinized ever since. Many fans felt the Oilers were going off the board when they chose the Calgary Hitmen blueliner. Those draft day critics fed off Plante's injury riddled 2007-08 season and used his problems as evidence of their own personal justification for being against the Oiler draft decision.
Many of those critics have been quieter this year as Plante has rebounded in fine fashion as a key part of the machine that the Hitmen have become. The #1 ranked team in the CHL is loaded with players having career years including Plante who has set personal highs in every category including points and penalty minutes.
On Monday night Dean Millard was able to speak with Plante after the Hitmen captured game 3 of their opening round series against the Edmonton Oil Kings. In the TPS exclusive, Plante discusses everything from the team-bonding mohawks the Hitmen have adopted to the much-publicized training camp hold out, his own personal development this year and his possible future with the Edmonton Oilers as he awaits a contract offer.
You can hear Millard's conversation with Oiler prospect Alex Plante... HERE.