Grayson Boe has spent the last several days immersed in what many fellow youth – and adults – would describe as a dream come true.
The 10-year-old from Edmonton, Alta., has been visiting Vancouver with his parents, Charlene and Trevor, to watch Team Canada make a run at world junior champions.
But along the way, as the team of young men fought to win each game, Grayson had his own personal mission: collect as many pucks from the players on ice as possible.
Grayson told Black Press Media his plan for pucks originated last year during the 41st world juniors in Montreal. But no matter how hard he tried to get the players’ attention, the pucks weren’t being thrown in his direction.
“My parents started making signs up and my dad said, ‘What if we made it in their language?’ So my mom Googled how to write ‘Puck Please’ in the different languages,” he said.
At the time, they didn’t have poster paper so the trio wrote the messages on the back of their printed tickets. By the end of the tournament, Grayson had collected 14 pucks.
During this year’s championship in Vancouver and Victoria, Grayson came prepared. With a dozen poster boards, each with a message translated in French, German, Danish and others, Grayson has managed to collect 24 pucks.
“The last game I asked for one from Alexis Lafrenière and he tossed me one,” Grayson said. “The other games I asked for one by my signs from Maxime Comtois and Owen Tippett and they also tossed me one.”
Out of all the Vancouver-based matches, the only team Grayson couldn’t grab a puck from was Team USA.
“I was really hoping Sweden would be in Vancouver so I could get a puck from them,” he added.
So what’s a kid to do with 40 junior championship pucks? The Boe family will be building a special cabinet for each one to be on display.
“And this time we know which puck is from what player as my mom wrote on each puck with white tape the puck [number], who it’s from and what game.”