Friday, 19 Apr 2024

Aliaksei Protas: Embracing Change as Number 21

jersey number 21

Aliaksei Protas, forward for the Washington Capitals, has made a significant change in his hockey career. He is bidding farewell to his previous number 59 and embracing a new identity as number 21 for the Capitals. This alteration has been officially reflected in the team’s roster, marking a fresh beginning for Protas in the nation’s capital.

A Symbolic Transition

The number 21 was previously worn by Garnet Hathaway, who spent the last four seasons as part of the Capitals’ roster. However, Hathaway departed from the team following a trade deadline deal with the Boston Bruins in February. He subsequently signed a two-year contract with the Philadelphia Flyers as an unrestricted free agent. This vacant number provided Protas with an opportunity to forge a connection to the Capitals’ history.

Protas had been sporting the number 59 throughout his entire NHL career until this point. He joined a rare group of players who have worn this number for the Capitals, including Julien Brouillette. Interestingly, Protas had initially been assigned this number when he first appeared at a Capitals preseason camp.

A Journey of Continuity

The transition to number 21 holds sentimental value for Protas as he had previously worn it during his junior career with the WHL’s Prince Albert Raiders. He continued to don this number during his one-season stint in the KHL with Dinamo Minsk. The change brings him full circle, connecting past success to his present ambitions.

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Roger Pagé, Protas’ billet dad during his time in Prince Albert, expressed his excitement for the number change on social media. The support and recognition from his past exemplify the significance of this transition for Protas.

A Promising Future

As Protas enters his first full season as an NHL player, he carries the experience of participating in a career-high 58 games with the Capitals last season. He played a vital role in the Hershey Bears’ journey to winning the Calder Cup. Under the guidance of head coach Spencer Carbery, whom Protas is already familiar with from their time together during the Bears’ 2020-21 campaign, Protas is poised to make his mark in the NHL.

The number 21 sweater holds great historical significance within the Capitals organization. Protas will become the 16th player in the team’s history to don this revered number. Notably, Brooks Laich holds the record for the longest tenure, donning the number for an impressive 12 years.

FAQs

Q: Who previously wore the number 21 for the Capitals?

A: Before Aliaksei Protas, several players showcased their talents while sporting the number 21 for the Capitals. These include Steve Atkinson, Mike Lampman, Dave Forbes, Dennis Maruk, Andre Hidi, Daryl Evans, Steve Leach, Mark Taylor, Michal Pivonka, Todd Krygier, Jeff Toms, James Black, Glen Metropolit, Brooks Laich, and Garnet Hathaway.

Q: Who will wear the number 59 for the Capitals now?

A: Future prospect Brett Hyland has been assigned the number 59. Hyland recently participated in the Capitals’ Development Camp after being selected by the team in the seventh round of the 2023 draft.

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Conclusion

Aliaksei Protas’ decision to switch from number 59 to number 21 symbolizes a new chapter in his hockey career. As he prepares for his first full season in the NHL, Protas aims to build on his past achievements and make an impact with the Washington Capitals. The number 21 holds a rich history within the Capitals’ organization, and Protas will join the esteemed list of players who have proudly sported this iconic sweater. Stay tuned as Protas continues to make his mark in the world of hockey.

Read more about Aliaksei Protas and other football players at Pesstatsdatabase.