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Belzile: AHL All-Star with NHL goals

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MONTREAL – Alex Belzile refers to himself as a “late bloomer”. And he could not be extra grateful for the saying, “Higher late than by no means”.On Friday, the 27-year-old ahead signed a one-year, two-way contract with the Canadiens for the 2019-20 season – his first NHL contract, no much less. The deal comes simply weeks after Belzile wrapped up a season to recollect, one during which he set profession highs in objectives (19), assists (35), factors (54), energy play objectives (eight), and game-winning objectives (three) en path to being named an AHL All-Star for the North Division.Tweet from @RocketLaval: Le however d’Alex Belzile qui a permis au Rocket de doubler son avance! The aim scored by @Belz_63 allowed the Rocket to double their lead! pic.twitter.com/JM4Cl4ZIM8The journey to get to the place he has was a protracted and winding one for Belzile, who hails from Saint-Eloi. For those who have a look at a map of North America, Belzile has performed on nearly all 4 corners of the continent with stops in Georgia (Gwinnett Gladiators – ECHL), Alaska (Alaska Aces – ECHL), and Texas (San Antonio Rampage – AHL) – amongst others – dotting the map alongside his native Quebec (Laval Rocket – AHL).Belzile could be the very definition of what it means to be a hockey journeyman, however he is aware of himself nicely sufficient to consider that an All-Star, profession season and subsequent NHL contract had been all the time inside attain.”My aim remains to be to play within the NHL. I’ve by no means been the man who tried to maneuver three steps forward as a substitute of going step-by-step,” defined Belzile, who famous he’d gone from wholesome scratch to dominant power in each the ECHL and AHL alongside the way in which. “I belief my course of, I belief my mentality. I am a late bloomer. I do know myself. I nonetheless know that I am moving into my peak, moving into my finest seasons proper now. I believe it is actually optimistic with my late improvement: my finest years are usually not behind me. It is the alternative: they’re forward of me.”With optimism like that, Belzile was due for a breakout ultimately and he pointed to his mindset as the main contributor in direction of his private success in 2018-19.”Actually, I believe it is the boldness. It is a solution so simple as that. Sure, there are quite a lot of different issues and once you add the whole lot up collectively, it makes you higher as a hockey participant,” outlined Belzile, who loved 11 multi-point outings final season in Laval. “But when you do not have the boldness to do it, it will get harder.”Tweet from @RocketLaval: Quand Alex Belzile vole la rondelle 💁��������� When @Belz_63 steals the puck 💁���������#GoRocket pic.twitter.com/taSsyeawngBelzile used that self-assurance to problem himself to tackle new obligations on each ends of the ice, which helped put him on the radar – and was in flip much more of a confidence enhance as an added bonus.”Final 12 months in Laval, I had an actual probability and I took it extra on the offensive half. I have been offensive all my life and I’ve by no means had an actual probability within the AHL to show that I can play a extremely good two hundred-foot sport. However being on the ability play, that helps you being assured,” he shared. “Lots of people did not actually know me, however more often than not that is the way in which I prefer it – being within the shadows and simply doing my factor and dealing arduous day by day in apply. I do know, it is cliche, however I believe that is the fitting strategy.”Tweet from @RocketLaval: Gr��ce �� son however hier soir, @Belz_63 est de retour au sommet des pointeurs chez le Rocket avec 14 factors.Due to his aim final night time, Alex Belzile is again on high of the crew scoring leaders with 14 factors. pic.twitter.com/uH5jPu0gZKThat strategy did result in Belzile getting seen, as he was chosen for the 2019 AHL All-Star sport in Springfield, MA. Belzile was each flattered and shocked by the nod.”It was an enormous honor. I did not actually anticipate it once they introduced me again in January,” he recalled. “That was not a life aim, however it was actually enjoyable to be a part of. And I obtained to know extra folks across the league. Possibly folks began to know me and spot me extra.”Tweet from @RocketLaval: Il fallait revoir l’��chapp�� d’Alex d’un autre angle. 🙃We needed to see this once more. 🙃#AhlAllStar pic.twitter.com/AWWlv5zQ39Belzile might be spending his summer season coaching at Université Laval in Quebec Metropolis with a bunch of AHLers and NHLers that features Habs centerman Phillip Danault. And for these followers who aren’t conversant in Belzile, he says he likes to mannequin his sport after his pal and offseason exercise buddy.”I am actually versatile. I can play each single position, on each single line. Final 12 months in Laval, I had good numbers. I am an awesome two method participant. I really like the way in which [Danault] performs. It is actually environment friendly. I might say I am a extremely environment friendly, constant participant. I believe my largest asset is my hockey sense. Whatever the time of the sport, or the conditions I am in, I’ll discover my technique to adapt,” concluded Belzile. “And my hockey sense will assist me, clearly. So I believe that is my largest asset.”

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