In Roman Basran’s mind, there was no other option. He knew he would be in the position he’s in, and he worked hard for it.
That position is currently tending the net for the Kelowna Rockets of the Western Hockey League.
It took Basran 6 years to get from hockey rookie to WHL goalie. He was 9 years old when he first laced up a pair of skates, and now just over half a decade later, he has become the first 16-year-old in WHL history to record a shutout in his first ever game.
Basran was tested 38 times en route to his first career shutout and credits his confidence and determination for getting him the win, and the goose egg.
“a lot of visualization, and knowing I’m going to get a shutout my first game. Ever since I got drafted I pictured myself getting a 40-shot shutout and getting the first star at the end of the game and that’s what happened.”
Growing up in Delta, BC, it was his grandpa who took him to Canucks games in Vancouver. In the Rogers Arena crowd Basran got an up-close look as his Canucks hit the ice. The arena was packed with thousands of screaming fans, the sound of the puck hitting the tape of the stick sounded more prevalent than ever, but Basran remained fixated on one player: Roberto Luongo.
Basran idolized Luongo. He was the reason Basran fell in love with the Canucks and it was by watching Luongo on TV that Basran’s love for the position of netminder grew. Before the Canucks traded Luongo, Basran even got a chance to meet his idol and get his autograph. To this day, the greatest goalie in both Canucks and Panthers history is still Basran’s role model, making Basran tune in to more Panthers game than he ever imagined and continually keeping tabs on the legendary goaltender.
“My Nana (Grandpa) always took me to Canucks games and there I fell in love with Luongo and decided to become a goalie.”
Kelowna drafted Basran in the third round of the 2016 bantam draft, the highest the Rockets have selected a goalie since 2001. Rockets Assistant GM and Director of Player Personnel complimented Basran’s poise and patience.
Basran is just a part of the wave of Indo-Canadian players entering the NHL. Jujhar Khaira has been the most recent, and only third Indo-Canadian to play in the league, but a handful of others have been drafted. Basran hopes to one day join that list.
Though some injuries may have brought a few hurdles for Basran, he’s confident he can battle through the adversity.
“I didn’t get to fully show what I can do, I got sent back to Midget, I wasn’t happy with that. But it made me think how much harder I have to work to get where I want to be.”
The family support for Basran has always been there. Basran thanked his parents, for always waking up early to take him to practices, and his sister who has had to move to three different schools to support Basran’s hockey career.
Hockey has been a part of Basran’s life ever since he was a kid, and he hopes it could continue to be his career for a long time.
Apna Hockey News