The Adirondack Thunder are coming off their first season in which they didn’t qualify for the Kelly Cup Playoffs. This of course being the case despite hitting the ice for 63 games last season. With no signings in the last few weeks, it seems like a fitting time to get to know some of the new faces coming to Adirondack for the upcoming season. Today, we will get to know the second player coming over from Minnesota St. (Mankato), Josh French.
Family Hockey Ties
Hockey runs deep in the French household, as his dad played for St.Cloud State then Ferris State, his two other brothers played high school and junior hockey and his sister played high school hockey. “Hockey’s been a big part of my family. I love coming home and playing the men’s league with my dad and brothers,” said French. Josh is the first member of his family to play professional hockey by making it to the ECHL with the Adirondack Thunder.
Over the course of his high school, junior and college career, French only played out in the midwest as he went to high school and college in Minnesota and spent two years with the USHL’s Omaha Lancers. During those six years, he’s played alongside Nick Rivera, and during their four years at Mankato, they lived together. “Ya I think it’s super special, I think when we started off in Omaha six years ago, we didn’t think much of it. He wasn’t committed at the time and I was, and in the second year, he committed and we became a lot closer,” said French when asked about how special it is to be spending a seventh season with Nick.
Minnesota Boy Heading North
The adjustment to Adirondack won’t be that difficult, especially having Rivera by his side. “Just having a teammate and a friend, it’s always different entering a new team, especially when you don’t know anybody like it was in juniors. He mentioned that coming to Adirondack will be a change of scenery, and he’s not exactly sure what the area has to offer, but mentions its exciting going somewhere new.
He also talked about having a lot of guys from the ECHL in his area to skate with. “I got a lot of guys who are playing in the East Coast, so we’ve kind of connected and gotten some local ice to practice. Josh also mentioned that this is helping him get adjusted to the style of play that he will see in the ECHL.
When asked about having a dedicated fanbase in Glens Falls, Josh said, “A dedicated fan base is huge. They bring energy they bring excitement to every game, whether they are in the arena or not. It gives you more of a sense of purpose,” he said when asked about how the dedication continues off the ice, including events like skating with the team and doing community service.