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Kevin WeekesPhoto illustration The Globe and Mail. Source photo Ethan Miller/Getty Images

While Friday’s NHL trade-deadline day represented the last chance for teams to bring in outside help before the playoffs begin next month, for former goaltender turned broadcaster Kevin Weekes, it was a day much like any other – which is to say extremely busy.

From training camp through to the Stanley Cup final, the self-described “busiest man in the game” is a relentless hockey-content machine, breaking trades, providing game analysis and generally bringing his expertise – gleaned from a 348-game NHL career – to ESPN, TSN and the NHL Network. And when the 48-year-old – who broke a broadcasting barrier by becoming the sport’s first Black analyst in 2009 – is not in front of the camera, he’s focusing on his other business ventures, including real estate and his own media advisory/consulting company.

Are you busier as a broadcaster than you were as a player?

When I was playing, it was 24/7. And now that I’m broadcasting, it’s, I don’t know, can we say 48/7? Literally. It’s a lot just because it’s a 24-hour business, sports, right? I’m on the air I think probably more than any hockey analyst in the world. It’s like 200-plus days, cramped into an NHL season on multiple platforms on multiple networks. So that’s an emphatic yes. I’m much busier than when I played if that’s possible.

Who are your heroes in real life?

I start with my parents, both my mom and dad emigrating from beautiful Barbados to come to Toronto, and then being open minded enough and so supportive of my sister and I for us to chase our dreams and being open minded for me to play hockey and chase that dream. Just a lot of selflessness that way and then in my case playing elite-level youth hockey since I was eight. If you live in Toronto you know the traffic, and I don’t care what anybody says, the traffic was crazy since I grew up ‘til present time. So for my parents to make those sacrifices driving to the rink, getting me new equipment, tournament fees, whatever, drive all over the city, this rink, that rink, that game. It’s just so much. So them, No. 1.

Any sporting icons that you looked up to?

I would say Grant Fuhr, especially with him being the first Black goalie in NHL history and with him being a Hall of Famer and playing on those great Edmonton Oiler teams with Wayne Gretzky and all the other superstars like him, and winning those Stanley Cups and playing internationally for Canada. He was the one that proved to me that it was possible to play in the NHL and to look like me and to make the league and have a career. Whereas there were a lot of people that didn’t look like me and some people that looked like me that didn’t think that that was possible. And then I would say the great Michael Jordan, for so many reasons. For his greatness and his performance on the floor, and his business savviness, his business acumen off the floor and becoming the first former athlete to become a billionaire. And having the chance to meet him several times and attend some of his events. I spent some time with him and Gretzky last year when I toured Jordan’s golf course in Florida during the Stanley Cup final.

Wait, so you played golf with Jordan and Gretzky?

I was at his course. A former teammate of mine, Brad Richards, we played together at Tampa. Richie’s a member of his course, The Grove XXIII, so he brought me there as a guest. We actually got rained out that day, which is actually even better, because I just listened to those guys tell stories. And just [be] a sponge of life and insight of what those guys were sharing. Obviously I got a chance to play against Gretz when I was younger, when I first came to the league, but just listening to those guys and watching how they approach things and getting a sense for how they approach life and their mindset and how much they love their respective sports and sports in general. I mean, that’s a masterclass in and of itself, as you can imagine.

And it didn’t cost you any money either (with Jordan being a renowned golf gambler).

I know exactly what you mean, but also, I would have had to pay for that course at Oxford, or Harvard or MIT or Princeton or somewhere, I would have had to pay for that sports-business course. So fortunately, on both ends, to your point and mine, it was free in terms of cost, but invaluable.

Who or what is the love of your life?

Family for me, but aside from that, I would say it’s sports and business. I love sports and business. Sports, obviously the NHL for sure. Hockey No. 1, but I grew up in Toronto playing other sports, too. I played high school basketball, city basketball championship, I ran track, I did other things. So I love sport, because of a lot of what sports teaches for life skills as well, and for personal development and accountability and earned opportunity and understanding of team and putting yourself on a path where you’re chasing success and chasing something positive. It’s so unique that way. And then on the business side, I’ve always loved business since I was young. I’ve been fascinated with that.

What is your most treasured possession?

I’d probably say my first hockey jersey from the Toronto Olympic house league in 1979 was it, or 1980? The green team. I was on the green team and we were sponsored by Parsons Enterprises. I didn’t even know what that was but they were our sponsor. I was six years old, that was the year I started playing on ice at [Toronto’s] St. Mike’s Arena. And I saw that [jersey] at my parents’ house in the hockey room when we were home at Christmas. And you know, that almost makes me emotional even thinking about it now. Just because you start off with a huge dream at six, and there was kind of a direct correlation to that dream of wanting to play in the NHL. So from then to here and everything in between, that was the start of it.

Were you a goalie back then?

I was a goalie right from the beginning. That’s what I aspired to do. As a kid, you write these books, and I had a picture of myself on the ice with a scoreboard and the NHL logo in the middle of the scoreboard. So I knew at six, I was one of those fortunate people in that respect that I had a clear vision of what I wanted to accomplish.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?

I have one that I coined that everybody seems to be stealing. I gotta get this trademarked. ‘Welcome to the National.’ I say that emphatically when somebody scores their first NHL goal, or if a goalie gets their first NHL win, or if a coach gets their first NHL win, and I’m on the air I’ll usually say ‘Welcome to the National.’ So that could be the most overused one, but I feel it’s appropriate because it took a long time for me to get my first NHL win. I couldn’t win a game to save my life when I first came into the league, so I remember the pain of that and the frustration and the embarrassment of that. So I was always mindful and cognizant of that and want to celebrate that milestone for those players and coaches or whoever when they get that first goal or win. You’ve done the impossible. Not only have you made the league, but you’ve had a marker of success in making the league, which is just virtually impossible to do.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

I really think my greatest achievements have been doing what a lot of people feel is the impossible. Not once as a player, but the same as a broadcaster, being the first Black broadcaster in NHL history. I would say it’s doing those things that people thought were impossible and doing them in a way where there’s a lot of benefits for other people. The selflessness because the game is able to benefit, the sport, the league, the clubs, the teams, the players, the fans who I have those connections with, our families are able to benefit as well. So I would say that those are the real keys, being able to accomplish those two impossible things, but with being able to share in those successes with others.

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