The young Ukrainian whom Quebec gave a smile

The young Ukrainian whom Quebec gave a smile

When he joined Team Ukraine Select in Romania, Mykyta Staskevich was reclusive, dark, and we can understand it: he’s one of those young Ukrainians whose father is currently fighting on the front lines for Ukraine’s freedom. Since arriving in Quebec, however, he has regained his smile, another sign of the impact of these young Ukrainians’ participation in the Pee-Wee tournament.

Ice hockey fans were able to spot young Saskevich for his skills on the ice. The Ukrainian small number 60 is characterized by its dynamism and the speed of its hands. But internally, the young forward is much more than a good pee-wee hockey player. He is the perfect example of what Quebec has been able to positively teach to these young people who are going through difficult times at home.

Young Staskevich after training on February 9.

Photo Stevens LeBlanc

Young Staskevich after training on February 9.

As the team regrouped in Romania before leaving for Quebec prep camp, young Staskevitch was hard to reach.

“His father is in battle and every day we don’t know if he’s alive or not. It’s hard to imagine what a young person like him can go through. When he came to us, we felt sad, withdrawn, recalls the head coach of the Ukraine Select team, Evgheniy Pysarenko. He hardly spoke and always frowned. We really didn’t know how he would react. »

As soon as training began, Team Ukraine Select began preparing for the Pee-Wee tournament, and young Staskevich’s eyes lit up.


“We had the feeling that he liked the atmosphere in the team. Also, he’s really talented, so players quickly liked him. But talent aside, he’s a young man with a lot of character and when he speaks the players listen. Everything he experiences at home, we have the feeling that he has grown a lot. He is more mature than the rest of the group, ”adds Pysarenko, whom young Staskevich’s mother thanked for managing to give him a smile.

The captain, hands in the air, celebrates with his team the victory at the start of the game on Saturday in the Videotron Center.

Photo Didier Debusschere

The captain, hands in the air, celebrates with his team the victory at the start of the game on Saturday in the Videotron Center.

“It’s heartwarming. Our job is to make sure they are in a state of mind where they feel safe. »

Olivier Hubert-Benoit has hosted Staskevitch and Yehor Kosenko since they arrived in Quebec. He too was able to observe the young Ukrainian’s progress.

“In the beginning he was very withdrawn and it was very difficult to read his feelings. Yehor helped him a lot, acting as his big brother in the beginning to create the springboard. A transformation has really taken place. On Monday he played in the snow with my children all evening. You can tell he’s happy and likes to laugh. Also, his laugh is special and he’s really coming to get us. »

Before the start of the tournament, the coaching staff asked all players to vote for the election of Ukraine’s captain. And the result was clear: the players almost all voted for Staskevich.


When Le Journal met him on Monday morning in a rather reserved manner, the young striker smiled broadly when asked what it meant to him to be the captain of his training.

“I try to lead by example during training and discipline on and off the ice. It’s an honor and I feel like the captain, not only of our team but of the whole country,” he said through assistant coach Andrei Lupandin’s translation.

Being the captain of your whole country is certainly a heavy responsibility for a young man of his age. However, this answer shows the seriousness and maturity of this young and talented forward who dreams of one day playing in the NHL.

“He’s a special young man,” adds Pysarenko. I wish him his dreams come true because he deserves it so much. His father is a hero and he is currently risking his life to liberate our country. Mykyta has to live with this thought every day and finds it difficult to put herself in her shoes. On the other hand, he accepts and understands the situation. I’m so proud of him and how he handles it
all that. »

  • Also, Ukraine beat Wolves of Romania 2-0 on Monday and will play their next game on Friday morning at 8am against Flames of Vermont.


8 o’clock Quebec Northeast Frontenac c. Korea zenith ice cream aa

9:15 a.m Grail Claretian College c. Zurich lion AA elite

10 am. Adirondack Jr. Wings v. Brantford 99ers AAA

10:30 am Charles Lemoyne dynamics c. Shawinigan cataracts AA elite

11:15 a.m Zietera Polish Talents v. Connecticut Junior Ranger AA elite

11:45 a.m MID Fairfield Jr. Rangers v. Anaheim Jr Ducks AAA

12:30 pm. England girl v. Atlantis Girls Selects Feminine

13 o’clock Laval patriots v. Czech knights AAA

2:15 p.m Philadelphia Flyers v. York Simcoe Express AAA

3 pm. Haute Beauce lynx c. Rouen kite bb

3:30 p.m. San Diego Oilers v. Vegas Jr. Golden Knights aa


Chadwick Dolphins 2

Delémont spirits 7

England 7

Anger dukes 0

AHW Poland 2

NYC North Park 6

Connecticut Jr. Whalers 1

New Jersey Devil 2

Minuteman Flames 6

Detroit Red Wings 3

Boston Junior Eagles 2

Elite Pittsburgh Penguins 0

Quebec Northeast Lords 4

Wing of the Greenwich Skating Club 3

South Shore Express 3 2

Shawinigan Dynamos 1

Team Romania Wolves

Ukraine team selection

Edmonton oiler

Drummondville Voltigeurs

Durham West Blitz

Sefha Fury