Tanner Jeannot was a leader in his junior hockey days, named an assistant captain in his final season with the WHL's Moose Jaw Warriors. It didn't take long for those leadership qualities to carry over to the professional hockey ranks.
The Oxbow native was named an assistant captain of the AHL's Chicago Wolves for the coming season. Not only is Jeannot in just his third season of professional hockey, but he's also in his first in Chicago.
"It's an honour to wear a letter," he said. "I wasn't really expecting it coming into this year, being only my third year of pro, but with the year being what it is, being so crazy, and with Milwaukee deciding to opt out of the season and sharing a team in Chicago with Carolina, this year's been really crazy and we have a pretty young team in Chicago and I found myself in a spot that I can be a bit of a leader."
The dynamic in Chicago this year is an odd one, as both the Nashville Predators (who own Jeannot's rights) and the Carolina Hurricanes are sending their prospects to Chicago, who were the affiliate for the Vegas Golden Knights last season. The odd situation hasn't seemed to slow Jeannot down, however, as he's posted three points in his first three games.
"I guess I can chalk that up to some experience," said Jeannot, "being around it for a few years now and knowing what to expect in terms of the level of play and the speed of play. There's a lot more going into it this year with the different style of the schedule."
Beyond the point production, the first three games have gone well for Jeannot and the Wolves as they're 3-0 on the season. In that time, Jeannot has been skating with a number of first-round picks of the two NHL teams, including recent World Junior silver medalists Phil Tomasino and Ryan Suzuki, and Carolina first-rounder Seth Jarvis.
"They're younger guys, it's their first year in the league, so I'm just providing a little experience for them with that," he said. "Obviously they're very skilled players. Once they kind of figure out what the pro game is like, they're going to be really dangerous and effective and they'll have great careers. It's been fun, I'm getting a lot more opportunity than in previous years."