After earning the first shutout in NHL Winter Classic history on New Year’s Day during the Seattle Kraken’s 3-0 win over the Vegas Golden Knights, former Arizona State goaltender Joey Daccord joined the Barstool Sports Spittin’ Chiclets Podcast, sharing stories from his time at ASU and in the NHL.
Daccord played three seasons at Arizona State and appeared in 82 games before signing a contract with the Ottawa Senators and becoming the first Sun Devil to play in an NHL game in 2019. When recruited by Arizona State head coach Greg Powers, Daccord said it took a lot of trust to commit to a program that hadn’t played a single game in program history at the time.
“When I look back at the whole collegiate process, it was pretty nuts for me because I felt like I was close to getting a scholarship the whole time, but never really got one and no one offered me a scholarship,” Daccord said. “At first when [Greg Powers] first called and he first brought up ASU, I was really hesitant because I just wanted to play hockey. I didn’t want to get that reputation of being like, ‘Oh this kid just wants a party or have a good time,’ I just wanted to play hockey.”
The 27 year old from North Andover, Massachusetts said that it was a mindset change to think about playing college hockey at Arizona State, after growing up in the northeast and envisioning playing for a traditional NCAA hockey powerhouse like Boston College.
“At the end of the day, they were the only school that offered me a scholarship and gave me an opportunity,” the ASU program record holder for most career shutouts said. “They offered me the net and I think that’s something that’s really hard to get in college hockey and I said you know what, you look at all of these amazing schools that have big tradition – the mantra at ASU is ‘Be the Tradition’ – and when I look back at it now I feel like a huge part of establishing the tradition at that school and you see how far they’ve come with the new arena and joining the NCHC next year, like it’s pretty incredible and I’m honored that I was able to help start that. It says on the wall at [Mullett Arena] ‘Be the Tradition’ and I feel like I embody that so it’s pretty cool for me.”
Daccord mentioned it took a lot of faith in the Arizona State athletic department that they would deliver on their promise to get a full-fledged NCAA hockey program up and running by the time he was ready to come to Tempe. Daccord’s biggest concern at ASU was the lack of a hockey arena, but he would go on to play three memorable seasons at the since demolished Oceanside Ice Arena, where Spittin’ Chiclets co-host and former Arizona Coyote Paul Bissonnette first saw him play.
“My first year I did not like playing at Oceanside at all,” Daccord said about the arena, that had an official capacity of 751. “My second and third year, we would pack it and they went way over capacity of what was allowed in there. The standing room area in the corner would be like 10 people deep and everyone was just crushing having a great time and it was so loud in there, you could touch the roof with your stick. It was just so much fun and actually ended up being pretty sweet. Now with the real rink at Mullett, it everything you could imagine and hope for in a DI school, it’s really cool to see it.”
The Kraken netminder, who is 9-0-2 in his last 11 starts, is scheduled to play again at Mullett Arena on March 22. He has made two appearances in the new home of the Sun Devils and Arizona Coyotes, including a start on November 7 that ended in a shootout loss to the Coyotes.
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