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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Forgotten: Brad Fast (with Q&A)

Multiple choice question.  Who has the higher goals per game average for their NHL career?  a) Wayne Gretzky; b) Mike Bossy; c) Steven Stamkos; or d) Brad Fast.  If you answered Brad Fast, then you are correct.  Of course you answered Brad Fast, since you already read who this post is about... you cheater.
  A 3rd round pick in the 1999 draft, Brad Fast made his NHL debut with the Carolina Hurricanes in the final game of the 2003-04 season.  With 2:26 left in the 3rd period, and the Hurricanes losing 6-5 to the Florida Panthers, Brad Fast scored his first and only goal of his NHL career.  It was also the last game-tying goal scored in the history of the NHL, as the NHL would switch to the shoot-out in it's next season following the 2004-05 lockout.
   Brad Fast would spend 2004-05 in the AHL before signing with the Los Angeles Kings for the 2005-06 season.  After a season with the King's AHL affiliate, the Manchester Monarchs, Fast played a few seasons in Europe.  He finished his pro career with three seasons with Anyang Halla, of the Asia League Ice Hockey.   He never did get a chance to play in the NHL again.  Fast retired from professional hockey in 2011.
  In researching the career of Brad Fast, I was able to contact him and he kindly agreed to answer some questions regarding his career.

The Cardboard and Me: Who was your hockey idol while growing up?

Brad Fast: Wayne Gretzky and Scott Niedermayer

C&M: Did you collect hockey cards as a kid?

Brad Fast: Yes, I had quite the collection at one time.

C&M: Did you have a favorite set and card?

Brad Fast: I liked to collect Upper Deck and my favourite card at the time was the Pavel Bure rookie card, it was a hot item in Northern BC!

C&M: You had two NHL rookie cards made of you. How many do you own?

Brad Fast: I believe I have one of each, unless my kids of traded them!

C&M: Going into the 1999 NHL entry draft, you were ranked as a 7th round pick. The Carolina Hurricanes selected you in the 3rd round. I have read that you were very surprised at being drafted so high. What kind of interest did the Hurricanes show in you before the draft?

Brad Fast: I met with one of their scouts, Lawrence Ferguson once, but didn't think much of it as I was going to be a teammate of his grandson, Troy at Michigan State and thought it was more of an introduction because of that.

C&M: You had already committed to Michigan State University. How tempting was it to pursue the NHL immediately instead of the NCAA?

Brad Fast: Once I was committed to MSU I had no thoughts about pursuing pro until I had proven myself there, and I had a long way to go!

C&M: You were an emergency call-up for your NHL debut. Did you get a chance to practice with the team before the game?

Brad Fast: No, I had played an AHL game in Lowell the night before and only found out after the game that I got the call up. So I flew to Florida for an afternoon game early the next morning making it there only in time to grab a quick bite and a weak attempt at a nap.

C&M: Other than scoring the goal, what was your favorite memory from that game?

Brad Fast: Standing on the blue line for the National Anthem and taking in the whole atmosphere of an NHL game from that spot was pretty cool.

C&M: Do you have the puck from your goal? Considering that it is the last game-tying goal in NHL history, has the Hockey Hall of Fame, or a collector, ever asked for it?

Brad Fast: I do have the puck - it was only a year ago that I realized found out it was the last game-tying goal and no one has contacted me about it.

C&M: After one season in the Los Angeles Kings organization, you decided to play overseas. What factors played into that decision?

Brad Fast: I was not getting any real offers to stay in North America and not any NHL two-way deals and was then presented with a great opportunity to live and play in Switzerland, it was the start of a fun adventure!

C&M: You played three seasons in the Asian League Ice Hockey. Can you describe the biggest differences between playing in Asia and North America, in terms of the style of play and the fans?

Brad Fast: The style of play in Asia is not as physical and even varies amongst the country of origin of the teams (South Korea, China, and Japan). Japan teams definitely have a game modeled after the North American game as many Canadian coaches that have coached there in the past. Korean teams play more of a finesse game. That being said, the players are skilled and very fast in Asia. As for the fans, they are great and bring banners and signs similar to European Soccer, although their demeanor is much more subdued.

C&M: Outside of the NHL, what was your favorite arena to play in?

Brad Fast: Munn Ice Arena was always great, and I was fortunate enough to play in Spartan Stadium for the Cold War hockey game, that was a blast.

C&M: At what point, did you give up on a NHL career?

Brad Fast: Never

C&M: In your opinion, why did you never get another chance to play in the NHL?

Brad Fast: I had a bad year during the lockout and never got myself back to the level of play required for the NHL.

C&M: Do you get many autograph requests, either in person or through the mail?

Brad Fast: Ha, very rarely!

C&M: You currently own Elevation Hockey. Do you think you’ll ever have another career outside of hockey?

Brad Fast: Hopefully not!

  In a one game career, Brad Fast became one of three NHLers, (Dean Morton and Rolly Huard being the others), to score one goal in one career game and he also scored the last game-tying goal in NHL history.  So the next time, someone asks you, "2 1/2 minutes left in the 3rd, you're down by one, who do you want on the ice?",  remember the player who is shooting 100% in that situation.  Don't forget about Brad Fast.


  1. Haha great write up! That was awesome that you were able to actually get a hold of him! Nice research and great article!

  2. This post is exactly about why I love hockey cards. They bring you closer to the hockey itself. Perfect job here!

  3. Brad used to babysit me when he was at MSU so I tried to follow his career the best that I could. Now that he owns Elevation and it is out of my home rink I see him all the time. It's very cool that you wrote this article about him.