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Humble from Selkirk to the NHL and beyond

MJHL Podcast Feature – Written by Kyle Prystupa, Interview by Erik Swar, MJHL Media:

His path to the National Hockey League began with humble beginnings in the MJHL as a 17-year old rookie straight out of AA hockey.  Always a star in the Lord Selkirk system throughout minor hockey, Andrew Murray, the hometown kid always seemed destined to carry that reputation forward with the Selkirk Steelers.

“It was one of those things being from Selkirk and growing up and watching them play at ‘The Barn’ and the ‘Rec Centre’…you know you idolized those guys and you’re that kid that’s standing by the hallway asking the players for sticks then you become one of those players, it’s pretty special” comments Murray.

After completing his third MJHL season, along with a commitment to Bemidji State University, and continually flashing signs of professional potential, Murray was drafted 242nd overall by the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2001.  Murray played all four seasons of his college eligibility and was named captain of the BSU Beavers for the 2004-05 season where they advanced all the way to the NCAA Frozen Four.

The next season he began his professional career with the Syracuse Crunch, the American Hockey League affiliate of the Columbus Blue Jackets at the time.  After two seasons and beginning to wonder if he’d ever get a call the dream came true as Murray was called up to play his first NHL game midway through his third AHL season.  Upon returning home from a road game against Wilkes-Barre Scranton, Murray laughingly reflects on his first call up, “we rolled into Syracuse about one-thirty in the morning and the coach at the time Gary Agnew called me over and said that I’m going to Nashville that I’ve been called up, and he said the second thing is that your flight leaves at six-thirty in the morning.”

With an NHL career spanning six seasons in Columbus, San Jose, and St. Louis, Murray found himself taking an opportunity in Croatia with Medvescak Zagreb of the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) in 2013-14.  After the 2014-15 season, where he once again wore the “C” for his club, Murray decided to call it a career.  With a young family emerging, intense travel demands of the KHL, and recognizing the opportunity to use his education in business, he returned home to Manitoba with a humble gratitude of all the game offered him.

For more, listen to the full MJHL Podcast interview with Andrew Murray followed by Steinbach Pistons forward Kyle Bettens. Hosted by Erik Swar, the MJHL Podcast takes you inside the league each week with recaps, stories, interviews, rankings, and weekend previews.  The MJHL Podcast is available on all major platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and more.