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Skaters Go From Civic Arena To The NHL

Three NHL hockey players mentioned in recent articles that they got their start at Civic Arena in St. Clair Shores.

St. Clair Shores Civic Arena
St. Clair Shores Civic Arena
The ice rinks at Civic Arena have received attention recently as a training ground for future NHL hockey players.

Recent interviews of two current NHL hockey players, and one who is retired and was recently inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame, revealed they got their start in St. Clair Shores.

Doug Weight told USA Today that before he made it to the NHL - and was a Stanley Cup champion and Olympian - said he learned to skate at Civic Arena. 

He told the paper that his father put him on skates when he was 2-years-old to strengthen his legs because he wore braces on his legs and could barely walk. Although he told the paper that he looked like "Forrest Gump" when he started, Weight went on to be a champion and Hall of Fame athlete. 

In addition to being a training ground for at least one former NHL player, two current players traced their hockey roots back to St. Clair Shores according to a story in Macomb Now.

Washington Capital Steve Oleksy and Detroit Red Wing Dan DeKeyser both acknowledge their time in St. Clair Shores in the article.

Oleksy, currently of Chesterfield Township, first took the ice in the arena's learn to skate program and later played with the St. Clair Shores Saints. The 27-year-old is currently plays defense for the Capitals.

DeKeyser, who currently lives in Macomb Township, played mini-mite hockey in St. Clair Shores and also participated in the Silver Stick tournament - which takes place this weekend at Civic Arena. DeKeyser, 23, is a defenseman for the Red Wings.

One of the most famous St. Clair Shores hockey alumni is Mark Wells, who won the gold medal with the Miracle on Ice team in the 1980 Winter Olympics.
Petrice Durocher December 05, 2013 at 07:15 AM
Great story Ed! Great to hear many success stories from our local areas!

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