Born in Cochrane, Alberta, Mason Raymond has never forgotten where he came from. We asked Mason about what it was like growing up in a small town just outside of Calgary, and eventually getting to play for your home team.
Hometown Hockey: What do you remember of growing up in Cochrane?
MR: o be able to grow up in a town of that size, was something unique. Calgary was only a 30 minute drive, but seemed so far and a great big city!
Hometown Hockey: Which rink did you play most of your minor hockey?
MR: I played almost all of minor hockey at the original Cochrane Arena. During my Midget “AA” days, I played at the Spray Lake Sawmill Family Center once it opened.
Hometown Hockey: Was there a team or a coach you remember fondly?
MR: I played on an Atom team and we were called the “IYF”(In your face Warriors) (not sure how we as a team we came up with that name) We won that year and I remember we had a banner displayed in the rink and I always thought it was cool to see your name on that.
Hometown Hockey: Who did you look up to growing up? Was there an NHL player or team you admired?
MR: I Idolized the Flames as a kid without a doubt. My dad would take me to many games. My favorite players were Theo Fluery and Gary Roberts. I remember going to a game and getting a signature from Lanny McDonald and thinking it was the coolest thing ever!
Hometown Hockey: Did you play outdoor hockey in Cochrane on your farm?
MR: I played almost daily on an outdoor rink that my dad made for me in the winter months. My dad and I spent countless hours out there working on the game. The rink was steps off our deck, so was easy to go and play anytime. We had a border collie dog named Champ, that would lie in the net and try to stop pucks as they were coming his direction. He ended up being more like a goalie and it helped me find the holes in the net to aim at. Shots that missed the net, he would go retrieve in the snow and bring back to the ice surface. Champ would try to catch any puck that was shot at the net…needless to say, he did not have the prettiest of teeth as he aged…