When discussing Zach Gallant there is a lot to comment on in regards to his performance with the Petes. He’s a three zone player, he has an outstanding face off record, he’s physical. Much like Anaheim’s Ryan Kesler he’s gritty and gets pucks to the net. In addition to his skill, Gallant is an individual who leads by example, which was rewarded earlier this season when the team put an A on his jersey. He is truly an asset to any roster and is a strong candidate to make an impact with the Detroit Wings – Gallant was selected in the third round, 83rd overall at the 2017 NHL entry draft in Chicago. The only thing to match his athletic success is that within the classroom.
Upon speaking with Gallant you immediately recognize that the Oakville native is engaging, articulate and comfortable speaking about his academics. Furthermore, he has represented the OHL Scholastic Team for the past three seasons. Atop his well spoken manner the Petes centre is bilingual, having attended a French school before switching to the private academy, Fern Hill School. He explains that this is where the habits permitting him to thrive within the classroom were initiated, “That was really where I learned some of the values of hard work and note taking.”
For some players, envisioning a life beyond hockey is paralyzing. Gallant, however, has no qualms about a future outside the rink, “No one is going to be a hockey player forever and you have have something to do when you’re done playing hockey and you want to have an educational background.”
As the conversation progresses Gallant continuously references his mother and father as influences of his academic achievements, “My parents always had an impact on my schooling.” The hockey powerhouse’s favourite subjects include history, math and sciences. He is currently enrolled in a course at Trent discussing Canadian justice and is toying with the possibility of taking a history class online.
Embodying the ideal student-athlete identity did not come without some sacrifices and serious time management, “When you’re on the outside you don’t realize how busy not just hockey players but athletes are,” explained Gallant. The athlete doesn’t allow his career in hockey to overshadow his accomplishments elsewhere stating, “I’ve always been a hard worker, I don’t really give people a chance to prove that I’m unintelligent.”
Gallant has seemed to hit the sweet spot balancing hockey, school and family, referencing a trip to Greece with his family including younger sisters Andrea and Erica as a highlight of his summer and opportunity to temporarily relax from hockey.
If the “dumb jock” is a stereotype that still persists, Gallant is the ideal candidate to knock down its pillars. Although all signs point to a future of playing professionally, Gallant is sure to make waves in whatever endeavours he pursues whether that be with a stick or pencil in hand.
Interested in being part of the Petes family next season? The season ticket early-bird deadline is 4:30pm on Thursday, May 17, 2018. Call Steve at (705) 743-3681 ext. 263. Select sponsorship inventory is also available if you’re interested in growing your brand. To learn more, contact Greg at (705) 743-3681 ext. 227.