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High 5: Bruins great Middleton teaching kids the basics of hockey in Brewer

Rick Middleton helps young Mainers learn hockey.
High 5: Bruins great Middleton teaching kids the basics of hockey in Brewer
High 5: Bruins great Middleton teaching kids the basics of hockey in Brewer
Published: Apr. 14, 2021 at 7:24 PM EDT
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BREWER, Maine (WABI) - In our NAPA Coastal Auto Parts High 5 segment this week we feature the Bruins Youth Academy at Penobscot Ice Arena. One of the Boston Bruins greats even came to Brewer to help kids pick up hockey.

“Hockey has been my life. Not the only thing in my life, but I owe everything to it,” says Boston Bruins great Rick Middleton, “I was lucky enough to be able to make it to the NHL and stay in it for 14 years.”

Rick Middleton is one of the Boston Bruins with a number in the rafters. Now he is the President of the Bruins Alumni Association traveling New England to help grow the game.

“I really enjoy it,” says Middleton, “I love this age group because they’re right at the beginning and they are like sponges.”

The Bruins Academy is a learn to skate, learn to play program. Making it possible for kids to try hockey. Brewer’s Penobscot Ice Arena is one of its sites.

“Most of these are four weeks long and some kids are so hesitant when they get on the first week,” says Middleton, “but by the fourth week, they are flying around, and loving it.”

Middleton, nicknamed “nifty”, had nearly 1000 points in the NHL. Now he gets to teach kids the basics.

“Make sure they’re holding their stick properly,” says Middleton, “They have a knob on their stick so their hands don’t slip off. That their skates are sharpened.”

Basics in a game that could last the rest of these kids’ lives.

“It’s a tough game, but at the kid level, it’s the camaraderie that grows,” says Middleton, “And the friendships it is what’s the important thing here that you’ll have for the rest of your life.”

A big high five to you Rick Middleton and all the coaches there too.

If you know of someone in your community who makes sports possible and think we should feature them... please let us know. you can submit them to our website or shoot me an email EGullickson@wabi.tv.

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