What started out as a joke in a Rogers Sportsnet article turned into a social media sensation for the Prairie Hockey Academy. 

Prior to Game 5 of the Stanley Cup finals down three games to one against the Florida Panthers, Edmonton Oilers star Connor McDavid said they wanted to “drag’em back to Alberta.” Rogers Sportsnet’s Mark Spector joked in an article that someone should make that phrase into a country song. 

Prairie Hockey Academy Director and Founder Justin Simpkins, who is an Oilers fan, caught wind of this and decided to give it a try. 

“We just read that and laughed and said ‘Oh, let’s try it.’ We’re working in education and we’re really aware of AI and where that’s going in our world today. So, we started to use a couple of AI softwares and it took about 20 minutes, and we fooled around with it and tried to see what we could come up with,” Simpkins said. 

Using the AI technology, Simpkins said they were very specific in what they wanted in the song. 

“It needs to be a country song. It needs to be representative of probably Northern Alberta. I could have been Nickelback I guess, but we wanted it to write some lyrics that obviously had a lot to do with the Florida Panthers and the Oiler and dragging them back to Alberta. That was the goal. It had to be little bit of a toe-tapping, catching tune, and it’s not that complex. That was kind of the genesis of it,” he said. 

Since they released the song on their social media channels, it has garnered a lot of attention and Simpkins said it has been a lot of fun. It’s been shared around social media and has been picked up by Edmonton sports talk radio shows, not to mention a favourite for Simpkins’ four-year-old child. 

The Oilers were able to “Drag’em back to Alberta” with a 5-3 win in Game 5. Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals goes tonight in Edmonton with the Panthers leading the best-of-seven series 3-2. 

You can hear “Let’s Drag’em Back To Alberta” produced by the Prairie Hockey Academy below: