Paging all P.K. Subban haters. Please don your bibs and prepare to mow down on some crow.
In a recent clash between Subban's Canadiens and the Ottawa Senators, the star defenseman wired a puck into the crowd from center ice. It glanced off an adult spectator and caught a little boy named Thomas in the ear.
Kudos to the reality show 24CH for capturing what happened next so beautifully. Subban tracked down Thomas' family, had them come back for another Canadiens game, met Thomas and gave him a signed puck – the same puck Subban shot into Thomas' ear. The story unfolds here:
Especially heartbreaking is the footage of a father carrying his injured son up the steps after the puck catches him. And you have to love Thomas' matter of fact, "I'm here to see P.K. Subban so he can sign my puck." The kid owns it.
It's stories like this that have always made me a Subban apologist. For a sport with a dearth of big personalities and a culture of restraint enveloping too many interviews, Subban is a refreshing character who genuinely seems to care about Thomas.
Hats off to No. 76.
Matt Larkin is an associate editor at The Hockey News and a regular contributor to the thn.com Post-To-Post blog. For more great profiles, news and views from the world of hockey, subscribe to The Hockey News magazine. Follow Matt Larkin on Twitter at @THNMattLarkin