Kyle Okposo and 1,000 games played
It's a milestone worthy of being feted and even more so for a person so beloved by all.
Out of the thousands of players who have suited up for a game in the NHL, only 383 of them (380 skaters, three goalies) have played in 1,000 or more. Buffalo Sabres captain Kyle Okposo became the 381st skater (and 384th in all) to reach that milestone and it’s hard to find a more universally beloved player in the league.
Everywhere Okposo has played his teammates, coaches, executives, fans…you name them, they’ve latched onto him with the kind of admiration and respect people would long to receive at any time in their lives, never mind in a career.
Yet here’s Okposo about to eclipse a threshold relatively few have reached in their hockey careers and nary a bad word to be found about him anywhere. From his time as a youngster with the Minnesota Blades, to prep school at Shattuck’s St. Mary’s, to junior hockey with the Des Moines Buccaneers, to the University of Minnesota, into pro hockey with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers and into the NHL with the Sabres and New York Islanders where it all began for him in March 2008—it’s been a long road and one that isn’t coming to an end at 1,000 games.
“It’s something that something I will look back on very fondly, and I don’t do anything for praise or recognition, I just try to do the right thing,” Okposo said. “This is something that’s a byproduct of that, and it’s a special day for everybody that helped me get to this point, for sure, for my family and the people behind the scenes that have supported me throughout the whole way. So just going to try to enjoy it, soak everything.”
It’s no small feat by any means, but hearing what Okposo has meant to others and how they see him speaks volumes of him as a man and a player.
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