The NHL season began on Wednesday and continued into the weekend with several major games. Prior to one matchup between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Ottawa Senators, the players and coaches honored Alex Trebek. They held a moment of silence for the late Jeopardy! host who passed away on Nov. 8 at the age of 80.
"On Nov. 8, the world Canadian icon and Senators fan Alex Trebek," the arena announcer said. He continued and explained that the Jeopardy! host had celebrated his 2017 investiture as a member of the Order of Canada at a Senators game. The announcer then talked about former Senators general manager John Muckler, who passed away on Jan. 4. The team held a moment of silence for both men before the puck dropped.
The Senators held a moment of silence before the game to honour Alex Trebek and John Muckler. pic.twitter.com/49yrEE9XxS— TSN (@TSN_Sports) January 16, 2021
Trebek was born in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada and attended the University of Ottawa. He was a longtime supporter of the Senators and even surprised their fans with an announcement one month prior to his death. Trebek filmed a video announcing that the NHL team had selected forward Tim Stutzle with the No. 3 overall pick. Trebek's also contributed to the 2019 NHL Awards, presenting the Hart Memorial Trophy to Nikita Kucherov of the Tampa Bay Lightning.
The Senators lost Saturday's game 3-2, but Stutzle made a memorable contribution. The rookie scored his first career goal. He passed the puck to a teammate before setting up on the right side of the net. When the puck came back in his direction, he hit it out of midair and launched it past the goalie.
"I am deeply sorry to hear about the death of Alex Trebek," Stuetzle wrote on Instagram after Trebek passed away. "I was looking forward to meet the person who drafted me. He shared this unforgettable moment with me and I am very thankful for that. With my deepest condolences. REST IN PEACE MR.TREBEK."
The rookie first-rounder was only one of the many NHL figures paying tribute to Trebek following his death on Nov. 8. Commissioner Gary Bettman also released a statement talking about Trebek's involvement in the sport. "Alex was a passionate fan of our game and a true friend of our League," Bettman said. "He always said ‘yes’ when hockey called. We will miss him and send our condolences to his family and millions of friends and fans."