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OO7 Gets A Shot [1/2]

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OO7 Gets A Shot


Warm sunlight was just peeking through the curtains when Dukla Trencin winger, Ondrej Ohradka, woke up. He slid out of bed, adrenaline already pushing out the nighttime haze. He plopped down at his desk and woke up his laptop, the blue glare illuminating his spreading grin.


While he was sleeping, his life may have changed. 


While he was dreaming, his dreams may have come true. 


The VHLM had held it’s S67 draft that night (due to Slovakia’s time zone) and while he was late to declare himself eligible for the draft, he knew he had the skills to compete. He quickly clicked a browser open to check the draft tracker. He scrolled down. And down. 3rd round. 4th round. 5th round. 6th round.


His eyes widened and he sprung up when he saw himself picked in the 7th round at #68 by the Minnesota Storm. He flailed his fists in the air and hopped around but kept from yelling so as not to wake the rest of his family. Instead, he quickly dressed, grabbed a glass of orange juice and went for a run in the pleasantly cool Trencin morning. Barely anyone was in the streets to hear his whoops of joy. 


After the run, he came back to his home to tell his rising family the fantastic news. A text arrived from his agent, former VHL defenseman, Gunnar-Rune Rorvik, who congratulated him and said he would make arrangements for a press conference later in the week. Ohradka called Rorvik quickly to discuss the press conference and then made plans with his friends and family for a small celebration the next day. Texts and phone calls dominated the next few hours as the Ohradka household buzzed with activity.  Ondrej also received a phone call from the Minnesota Storm welcoming him to the organization and making arrangements to have him fly to America to begin training camp. 


That night, family members, friends, teammates and Dukla Trencin employees came over to their house to celebrate the talented winger being drafted. There was food, drink, karaoke, dancing and many Slovakian flags. The party-goers also used the time to say goodbye to their friend.


Two days later, Ohradka held a press conference in the home of HK Dukla Trencin, the Pavol Demitra Ice Hockey Stadium overlooking the Kockovsky Canal.


Image result for pavol demitra ice hockey stadium


To start, the young winger read from a prepared statement:


"Thank you all for coming this afternoon. I have an announcement to make. Earlier this week in the VHLM draft, I was chosen by the Minnesota Storm in the 7th round, 68th overall. I chose to declare as eligible for this draft at the encouragement of my agent, Gunnar-Rune Rorvik, as he played in that league and suggested it would be a great step in my development as a professional hockey player. I appreciate everyone's support for my hockey career the last few years.


I would like to thank my family for their sacrifice and my teammates and coaches with Dukla Trencin for helping me get to this point and all the fans who have cheered me on in this arena.


I would also I like to think the Minnesota Storm organization for drafting me and believing in me and I look forward to growing as a player and helping the team win. 


My career with Dukla Trencin is not over hopefully, but just on hold, as I hope to return to play here again some day.


Thank you again, I will now take any questions."


After an hour long question period, the press conference concluded and Ondrej Ohradka left to go pack. 


This is the first step in the young man's career aspirations. One scout said this could be a steal for Minnesota. Time will tell if Ohradka's and Minnesota's dreams will come true.

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