NEW YORK – Max Domi doesn’t have a goal at Madison Square Garden just yet, but you know that lighting the lamp there on Tuesday night would be a thrill.
His father, Tie, used to play on that same ice at the very beginning of his NHL career, donning a New York Rangers uniform for 82 games for parts of three seasons in the early 1990s.
This will mark Domi’s fourth career appearance at the ‘World’s Most Famous Arena’ – and his first as a member of the Habs.
The 23-year-old centerman has a deep appreciation for the storied past of the building, where he is currently riding a three-game point streak after picking up one helper in each of his previous outings at 4 Pennsylvania Plaza with Arizona.
“Just stepping on the ice at MSG is something that there’s so much history, and the people that have played there – Michael Jackson has played there. It’s unbelievable, so the feeling is pretty surreal and I can’t wait,” said Domi, who scored a goal and picked up an assist during Monday night’s 4-3 shootout win over the New York Islanders in Brooklyn. “Playing in the Western Conference, you only come once a year to play that team. That’s always a game that I’d circled on the calendar.”
Moving to the Eastern Conference means coming to the Big Apple a little more often for games, which suits the Canadiens’ leading point-getting right now just fine.
Tie resides in Tribeca, a neighborhood in Lower Manhattan, and Max’s younger sister, Avery, attends the renowned Parsons School of Design, so road trips like this one are a good opportunity to enjoy some quality family time.
“He gets all excited and giddy because he shows me around the city,” mentioned Domi. “Taking a taxi with him or going to some of his favorite restaurants, it’s a great experience.”
According to the Habs’ forward, his father has wholeheartedly has embraced the New York lifestyle since returning to the area on a full-time basis.
Although, Montreal could be considered his “second home” given the number of flights he takes to watch his son play at the Bell Centre.
“My dad’s a die-hard New Yorker, and once you get to know him, you’ll understand why,” said Domi with a laugh. “He doesn’t sleep. He doesn’t sit down. He doesn’t take a second off, so he fits the city well.”
While Toronto is Domi’s primary training group during the offseason, he has spent portions of his summers training in the Empire State, too.
“The Peltz family are close family friends of ours, and they have a home a couple of hours north of the city. There’s a rink and we train with a bunch of pros. They’ve got some boys, Zach and Greg, who are both playing now, and we train with them as well,” explained Domi. “Overall I spend a lot of time training there. But, as of late, not enough. Hopefully, I’ll get back there this summer some more.”
One of Domi’s good buddies is another member of the Peltz clan – former Ottawa Senators draft pick, Brad Peltz.
“I think one of my favorite parts of New York City is seeing my boy Brad Peltz. He’s a big part,” said Domi with a smile. “He’s someone that I call the “mayor” of that city because he knows everyone. He takes care of me and we have a lot of fun.”
Max, Movember and National Diabetes Awareness Month
Over the weekend, we told you about Domi’s plan this year to dedicate his Movember efforts to Ashley Miklas, a good friend who passed away from cancer in September.
To learn more about his plan to donate to the Ashley Miklas Memorial Fund at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto, click here.
November is also National Diabetes Awareness Month and Domi – a Type 1 diabetic – is the national spokesperson for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).
He recently tweeted about his association with the organization, which aims to improve the lives of people living with the disease.