January 29, 2018

Unknown Canadian: Maxim Lapierre

Okay, so Maxim Lapierre is one of the better known 2018 Canadian Olympians.

For 614 NHL contests, most notably with Montreal and Vancouver, Maxim Lapierre was one of the more disliked players in NHL arenas, both by the opposing teams and their fans.

More of a pest than a true villain, Lapierre was a yappy competitor with a physical edge. He could always skate, take faceoffs and kill penalties, making him a useful bottom six forward until he wore out his welcome. He could even chip in with the odd nice goal. He scored 65 goals and 139 points in his NHL days.

Since disappearing from the NHL in 2015 Lapierre played a season with Modo in Sweden before finding a home with HC Lugano in Switzerland.

That he excels in Switzerland may surprise some of you, but not him.

"My speed helped me a lot to adapt to the European style of play and bigger rinks,” Lapierre said. “They thought I wouldn’t touch the puck because I was an agitator in the NHL, but to get (to the NHL), you also have to have the skills.”

There is a part of Lapierre that must be hoping a good showing in Pyeongchang will give him one last shot at the NHL, but that will be the furthest thing from his mind in February. 

"I never dreamed the Olympics would be a possibility for me. Every player on this team says the same thing. We have to make the most of this opportunity because it will never happen again for us."

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