Patrice Tremblay, who will be honoured by his old junior hockey team in Montreal later this month, teaches at Laity View Elementary. (Contributed)

Maple Ridge teacher to be honoured by Chicoutimi Saguenéens

Patrice Tremblay remember as one of the greats by his junior team

A Maple Ridge school teacher will be honoured by his old Quebec junior hockey team.

Patrice Tremblay will have his jersey retired by the Chicoutimi Saguenéens during a pre-game ceremony at the Centre Georges-Vézina in Chicoutimi on Dec. 29.

His number nine jersey is going to be retired alongside former NHLers including Montreal Canadiens great Guy Charbonneau and former Maple Leaf and Vancouver Canuck Felix ‘The Cat’ Potvin. Tremblay played with The Cat for one season in his 20-year-old campaign as the goaltender was starting his junior career.

The 50-year-old native of Jonquiere, Que., is the all-time leading goal-scorer for Chicoutimi of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey league, scoring 225 goals in 273 games over four seasons, while collecting 467 points from 1985 to 1989.

F0rget point-a-game, after his rookie campaign he was a goal-a-game player in the QMJHL. In his best year, 1986-1987, he scored 76 goals and had 156 points in 70 games. Then in the playoffs that year, in 19 games he tallied another 22 goals and 38 points.

Tremblay, a 5’8”, 155-pound right-winger, then moved on to McGill University, where he earned a physical education degree, and in three seasons tallied 86 goals and 175 points in 106 games overall, from 1989 to 1992. He was an OUAA second-team all-star in his final season, when he won the team’s Molson Cup award in 1991-92 and shared the Bobby Bell Trophy as Team MVP with future NHL coach Martin Raymond.

Tremblay was never drafted, but he went overseas to play professional hockey in France, where he continued piling up the points at an almost goal-a-game pace.

He was with the Viry Chatillons, not far from Paris, and played three seasons in France.

“They were allowed three import players, and most of the time it was guys from Quebec,” he said.

He also coached minor hockey there, and said it was a great experience.

Now he is a french immersion physical education teacher at Laity View Elementary in Maple Ridge, there since 2006. He has two daughters who have been hockey players in the Barracudas female minor hockey association, and he was a coach for them.

Now, he said, he spends more time on the golf course than on the ice.

Tremblay, who wore number nine with both Chicoutimi and McGill, will become the first Sagueneens player who was raised in the region and went on to have his jersey number retired.

He said it will be exciting and emotional to be part of the ceremony.

“Don’t forget that I left that organization 30 years ago. To be remembered by this honour is very special.”

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