Harder: Regina Pats feel like family to newcomer Colten Mayor

By Greg Harder – Leader Post

Colten Mayor is already feeling right at home with the Regina Pats.

The 19-year-old forward had his own private welcoming committee when he arrived in Regina after being acquired on Oct. 18 from the Red Deer Rebels.

“My whole family is from here,” explained Mayor. “My mom and my dad moved to St. Albert when they were about 20. I have two grandparents here and I’m living with them right now. It’s a pretty big deal when you get traded and move in with a new billet family. It takes time to become comfortable. I was comfortable the second I stepped foot in the house.”

Mayor said he used to visit Regina every second Christmas, but those trips had to end when he cracked the Rebels’ lineup three seasons ago.

Now that he’s with the Pats, every day is a family reunion.

“It’s not easy (being traded) but change is good,” he noted. “Once (Rebels GM) Brent Sutter told me I was getting traded to Regina, right off the bat I was really happy. I really like the organization and I’m really honoured to have come to a team that’s so awesome – great guys, great coaching staff.”

Mayor wasn’t caught off guard by the trade since his role had diminished this sea-son while the Rebels shifted gears towards a younger lineup. The rebuilding process became increasingly apparent as veteran players were being moved to other teams.

“As it slowly progressed you started to see certain things happen and you kind of got that feeling,” noted Mayor. “I was just hoping I could go somewhere that would benefit me. I have family here. (Sutter) knew that too so he wanted to put me in a good situation. I really do appreciate that. He set me up well so I’m happy for that.”

Mayor was also pleased to be thrown straight into the fire by the Pats, who immediately placed him on one of their top lines.

“I’m getting an opportunity and getting some good ice,” said Mayor, who had 14 goals and 38 points in 52 games last season. “I just want to bring some experience and leadership. I really want to be a good guy on the team and help the younger guys out. The playoffs are my main goal and helping the team win.”

Although his transition was eased by the presence of family, Mayor pointed out that it’s still a major adjustment when you’re dealing with new teammates, coaches, systems, rules, etc.

“Everything is new,” he said. “The systems are different so that’s taking me some time to get used to but the guys are really welcoming. They’re such a great group of guys. I’m really thankful for that. There’s a lot of good leadership. (Colton) Jobke is such a great captain. I just couldn’t be happier.”

Since the Pats are without their top two centres – Chandler Stephenson and Trent Ouellette – due to injuries, the Pats need Mayor to make the transition quickly. He has two goals and two assists in six games for Regina after notching three goals in 11 contests, while playing a limited role, with Red Deer.

“He’s a guy we brought here because he had some offensive upside,” said head coach Pat Conacher. “He’s getting better. I think he’ll be fine because he’s a smart kid. He can skate and has a good skillset. We also need him to play like a 19-yearold and help us win (in both ends of the rink) so I can play him in the last minute of games and put him in situations where I need a player of that age to execute when we need it. He’s not just here to score points.”

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