When Kevin Lough got the call he was getting promoted from the ECHL and becoming a member of the Chicago Wolves, the timing was incredible.
“I was actually helping my roommate pack after he got promoted to Binghamton and then I saw my head coach was calling me,” Lough said with a smile.
Lough’s head coach with the Adirondack Thunder happens to be Brad Tapper, former Wolves forward and assistant coach.
“He said, “Drop everything you are doing and grab a suit. You are headed to Chicago,’” Lough said.
Although Lough has played a small sample size of four games thus far, he has been terrific for the Wolves with 3 assists and a +4 plus/minus rating.
The Kanata, Ontario, native didn’t pile up points at quite that level during his four years at Colgate University. Lough posted 7 goals and 24 assists in 149 games, but the school recognized his impact as he Lough shared the award as the team’s top defenseman of the year and served an alternate captain his senior season. He also found time to study and earned a place on the Dean’s List.
Chicago Wolves sideline reporter Mark Citron talked with the new Wolves defenseman to pick Lough’s healthy brain.
Q: You were with your roommate who was already called up and shortly after you found out you were as well. There wasn’t time for a celebratory beverage before you both left town?
A: Not at all, honestly, but it’s an amazing feeling to be here. I only had 2 hours to make it to the (Albany) airport and the airport is almost an hour and a half away.
Q: Best hockey memory?
A: Tough question. One of my best hockey memories was when my collegiate team made the NCAA Tournament (in 2014). That is something that always stuck with me. Among others would be my last college game as a player at home. There are always milestones as a hockey player and it really is so hard to choose.
Q: What is it like making the transition from the ECHL to the AHL?
A: Obviously, the top players in the ECHL could play in the AHL. I think it is the consistency, really, that is the difference. The last few games we have played great and there are guys making plays on the fourth line and chipping in scoring goals. Honestly, as bad as it may sound (laughs), it may be easier to play on this level because everyone is kind of on the same page and makes plays. Everyone can make plays in places that you really won’t expect it, and it makes your life easier.
Q: It seems like you are very comfortable playing with Griffin Reinhart so far and vice versa. What are your thoughts playing with him so far?
A: Yeah, he is an unbelievable player, so smart. He has made it so easy for me and has talked to me on the bench a lot giving me pointers and advice. Casto and I had a conversation when I first got here about expectations from the team too. Everyone has been very helpful. And Jason Garrison, It has been unbelievable playing with him with all the experience he has, especially on the NHL level. It is amazing.
Q: Describe your game to the fans. What will we see out of Kevin Lough?
A: Speed, and can play in the offensive zone but I don’t score many goals (laughs). Playing a strong, sound defensive game in my own zone and contribute offensively with the puck and make plays whenever I can.
Q: Favorite hockey idol growing up?
A: Bobby Orr. He has always been one of the best, if not the best, players to play the game.
Q: Current Netflix show you are watching?
A: There are too many (laughs). Watching The Office (again), and I just watched a documentary called Icarus about the Olympic Russian doping scandal. Ozark is a good one, too.
Q: What is your pregame meal of choice?
A: Obviously a little difficult with the new transition now, but grilled chicken breast, sweet potato, and Brussel sprouts.
Q: Celebrity crush?
A: Jessica Alba.