Kian Calder is back in Portage for his final season of Junior A Hockey.
The defenceman will be returning to his hometown team for the 2022-23 campaign after winning the SJHL title last season with the Estevan Bruins. The Portage Terriers are thrilled to have someone with championship pedigree joining the roster, and Calder says he couldn't be happier to be back on the Terriers.
"It's awesome. There's no other place I'd rather finish my junior career than in front of my hometown," Calder notes.
Next year Portage will be the host of the Centennial Cup tournament, which Calder took part in with the Bruins. Estevan was the host of this past tournament, and while he says they didn't perform up to their standards, the defenceman learned a lot from just being there.
"You can't take anyone lightly at the tournament, everyone there is a champion. You have to stick to what got you there," Calder explains. "It wasn't a very successful tournament for us in Estevan this year, but I'm very grateful that I get another shot at it to kind of have a redemption tour in the tournament."
Calder adds it's not very often that you get a second opportunity to win something as prestigious as the Centennial Cup and notes he will definitely be making the most of it.
The defenceman is coming off a season where he totalled 35 points in 51 games. He outlines what Terrier fans can expect from him this year.
"I play a physical game. I'm not afraid to stick up for my teammates or anything like that. I can play on the power-play. I take pride in my defensive game, and I guess I put out some offence too sometimes," Calder continues. "Hopefully, I'll have a good season and be able to showcase all of that to the fans."
The local has been a member of the Dogs before, as he started the 2020-21 campaign in Portage before it was shut down due to COVID-19. He also played the first six games last year with the squad prior to being traded to Estevan.
Calder outlines what he hopes to accomplish in his senior season.
"I'm a team-first kind of guy, so I'd love to go out with a Turnbull Cup and Centennial Cup championship. That's the number one goal," Calder continues. "I do have some personal goals as well, I'd love to obtain a scholarship somewhere. I'm open to going anywhere. That's in the back of my mind though, as I'd rather win a championship again because there's no better feeling."
The former captain of the Central Plains Capitals says he will always cherish his time in Estevan and wants nothing more than to replicate their success this year in Portage.
"I'll remember every guy in that locker room for the rest of my life. The city of Estevan was buzzing for a week straight. To see everyone so happy, it doesn't get much better than that."