A training camp lasting more than a month with Junior Team Canada in Red Deer, punctuated by a mandatory 14-day quarantine at the hotel, an emotional World Junior Championship that ended with a loss in the final against the United States and, to conclude, a lightning camp with the Calgary Flames: Jakob Pelletier’s last two months have not been easy.
Cut off Tuesday night by the Flames, Pelletier officially set foot in Quebec on Wednesday night, for the first time in two months.
Reached by phone Wednesday, before his flight home, the 19-year-old striker had not yet had time to take a step back on everything he had just experienced in such a short time.
At the Flames camp, which he joined immediately after the World Cup final, he could only take part in training and an intra-team meeting before he was told that he was returning to finish his season in the QMJHL.
“I didn’t have time to relax and think about it all. I left at 9 a.m. the day after the final [du Championnat mondial] and it all went fast. What I do know, however, is that defeat still hurts, ”he confessed.
That setback against the United States in the gold medal game still went awry. Looking back, he was still able to recognize that he had had an unforgettable experience.
A UNITED GROUP
“I’ve rarely seen a group of guys get this close in a month and a half. The adversity that we went through brought us very close. “
After the defeat, moreover, the images of Pelletier hugging his teammates one by one in tears went around the web.
“I wanted them to know not only that I was there for them, but also that we could be proud of what we had done. Before the final, we had not allowed a single goal five on five. We could have our heads held high, even if it wasn’t the end we wanted. “
As for his camp with the Flames, he did not have much time to show off. Even if he clung to the hope of securing a few games in the NHL at the start of the season, he is not disappointed to return to Quebec and join the Foreurs de Val-d’Or, a team there. which has clearly displayed its colors in recent weeks with the acquisitions of Jordan Spence and Nathan Légaré.
“We’re lucky to be able to play. When I look at what’s going on in the OHL and the WHL, I realize it even more. To be with a team that aspires to top honors, I couldn’t ask for better. “
Pelletier will however have to undergo 14 days of isolation before joining his teammates.