Wednesday, March 29, 2017 - Submitted by Brave Bot
The CBR Brave welcome our first import for the year, Dominic Jalbert from the Morzine-Chamonix Pionniers (Pioneers) in the French Magnus League (Top grade in France) with former Newcastle North Stars import Luke Moffatt. The 180cm and 86kg lefty comes to Canberra from his third year in the Magnus League with experience in the LNAH and CIS leagues. The connection to Canberra comes from Stephen Blunden and Mathieu Ouellette (2014) who played with Jalbert at the University of Ottawa GeeGees in the Canadian Intercollegiate Sport system.
Jalbert is not only an excellent player on the ice but has finished a University degree and won the CIS Scholastic player of the year award as well. The application required for combining a High Distinction grade average and top tier Canadian collegiate hockey made the decision a no brainer for the Brave to bring Dominic into the team for season 2017.
CBR Brave Head Coach Rob Starke is excited about the addition of Jalbert, and what he will bring to the side.: "Dominic is a stellar player overseas and all reports suggest that he will fit in very well with the CBR Brave and will be an impact player in the AIHL." Along with the two way game, the left-handed style also attracted Starke to sign up Jalbert, "The vast majority of our defensemen are right-handed so having an experienced left-handed defenseman of Dominic's calibre is a terrific addition to our solid defensive line-up."
While suring up the defensive end with locals Byers and Rummukainen, stopping them going in will only be one half of his role with the Quebec native also offering an impressive offensive element to his game. With 29 points for Chamonix-Morzine, Jalbert sits in third league-wide for Defensemen points in season 2017. The other half will be putting them in.
Coach Starke has high hopes for Jalbert this season as he possesses such a two way game. "He is an offensive minded defenseman but he is also a complete player and I expect him to excel at both ends of the ice."
Before flying out to Canberra for the 2017 season, we had the chance to ask Dominic a few questions.
First question, you won the CHL scholastic player of the year, how is that award chosen and what is the image it carries with it?
"It was a very important award for me because it showed that I had a good balance in my life between school and hockey. I didn't want to have nothing in front of me after my hockey career so I studied hard and now I can enjoy my career knowing that I will have a good job after. The process to get the scholastic player award is that every team chose a player that will represent them. After, you have to send a file about yourself to the league. There is about 18 teams in the QMJHL, so 18 scholastic players, and the league only choose five for an interview in person. Then they select one player that is going to represent the league for the CHL award which includes three junior league (WHL, OHL and QMJHL) and I got it!"
After finishing high school you played for the Chicoutimi Saguenéens for four years then went to the University of Ottawa for three years where you played with Blunden and Wally. Was having a study gap after high school planned out and how has this pathway formed your playing?
"It’s kind of different in Quebec. We have high school until 16, then there is two years you have to do before college. So I never stopped going to school. After my junior career in Chicoutimi, I had two choices in front of me, either continue and take my chance with hockey, or going to school to get a degree while playing a good level of hockey in the CIS. I knew I could still take my chances after getting my degree and that’s what I did. I went to Reading in the ECHL after my last season in the CIS and we won the Kelly cup, that was an amazing experience. Then I decided to finish school for good, played one year in the LNAH, and started my European career in France the year after."
What degree did you do and why did you choose it?
"Business degree. I chose it because for me the business world has similar values as sport. Both are all about competition, team work, working hard and reaching goals. I have a minor in finance, but I definitely prefer marketing."
The brave fans are pretty wild and the cave gets rocking. What have former teammates Ouellette, Blunden and Guertin told you about the atmosphere for home games?
"They told me people in Canberra love hockey and that they are the best fans in the league. I can't wait to jump on the ice and see what is this Brave Cave I heard so much about!"
Former winners of the Scholastic trophy include Connor McDavid (Edmonton Oilers), Dougie Hamilton (Calgary Flames) and Stefan Elliot (Nashville Predators). The prize showed to Brave management that Dominic was switched on for life after hockey and has the common sense to think beyond the rink with his Business degree majoring in Marketing and a minor in Finance.
Jalbert will arrive and begin training in Canberra in a fortnight’s time. Dominics first game for 2017 will be against the Melbourne Mustangs at the O’Brien Group Arena in Melbourne on April 22. His first home game at the Brave Cave will be May 7 against the Newcastle North Stars.