Saskatchewan Roughriders’ Canadian defensive back Mike Edem wasn’t a hockey fan until he met 2019 first-round pick Peyton Krebs.
Edem and Krebs crossed paths while training with Nick Gies at Elite Training in Calgary. The versatile Riders’ defender makes his home there in the off-season and the Golden Knights prospect is from nearby Okotoks.
“When I first started training with him he would always have a session after mine. It got to a point, I just saw how competitive he was. He’d always trash talk me, ‘I could beat you in a race,'” Edem said on The Rod Pedersen Show.
“And I’m like, ‘Who is this little kid?’ I told my trainer, ‘Invite him to our session and let’s see how fast he is — put his money where his mouth is.’ Sure enough we had a few races. He never beat me, but he was nipping at my heels, so I give him respect.”
The now 20-year-old Krebs was selected by Las Vegas 17th overall in the 2019 NHL Draft, even though the play-making forward suffered a torn Achilles during an on-ice mishap while working on his skills in the off-season. Earlier that June, another player’s skate blade cut through Krebs’s apparently cut-proof sock.
The five-foot-eleven, 180-pound centre rehabbed and returned to the ice to help Canada win gold at the 2018 Hlinka Gretzky Cup with two goals and three assists in five games. Krebs played for the red and white at the 2021 World Junior Championship, netting three goals and setting up five more in seven games as Canada earned a silver medal.
Krebs played in four games for the Golden Knights during the 2021 NHL season. Las Vegas had 40 wins during the regular season, the most in the league, and are Stanley Cup contenders in the playoffs.
“I have grown to love hockey now that a good buddy of mine Peyton Krebs got drafted,” Edem said while laughing. “I’ve been following to keep up in case he talks to me about hockey and I can respond adequately.”