OBSERVER’s Christian Storms selected to 2019-20 US Men’s Development Sled Hockey Team
Back in the red, white and blue
For the fourth consecutive year, Jamestown native and OBSERVER Sports Reporter Christian Storms was selected to the US Men’s Development Sled Hockey Team.
Storms, 22, began his sled hockey career at the age of seven. He started skating with the Jamestown Lakers, at what is now known as the Northwest Arena.
“It was a great opportunity to start in Jamestown. They give local athletes an opportunity to get out and try playing an awesome sport like hockey,” said Storms.
Sled hockey is a modified version of ice hockey, to accomodate individuals without the ability to play traditional ice hockey. Players sit in a sled, with two skate blades beneath them, and use two hockey sticks with spikes on the end to propel themselves and stick-handle. The game is played with rules that would be found in a National Hockey League game, with the addition of T-boning — when one player uses the front of their sled to ram into the side of another.
Storms is one of 17 players selected to the 2019-20 National Development Team. In his fourth year, Storms is a veteran of the group. He has close relationships with multiple teammates, including returning goalie Kyle Huckaby, who has spent time with the Buffalo Sabres sled hockey team.
“It’s always a great honor to represent my country,” said Storms. “I’m glad I’ve been able to maintain a spot on the team, as the sport continues to grow and become more competitive.”
The team will have three development camps throughout the year, along with a competition at the end of the year that is yet to be determined.
Last year, Storms attended three camps and a competiton, making great strides from years past, with a larger role on the team.
“Each year my skill set has developed from being on the team,” said Storms. “I’ve grown to be more mature as a player and I’ve become more comfortable competing on the national stage.”
Storms will attend his first camp with the development team this season in a combined camp with the Men’s National Team this fall.
“I’m excited to get going,” he said. “I’m glad that we’ll have multiple combined camps with the National Team. It gives our guys a chance to show the coaching staff that we can play at that level, too.”