'This thing is a rock star' JT Compher brings the Lord Stanley Cup to Northbrook

JT Compher, 27, a 2013 Glenbrook North High School (GBN) graduate, brought the Stanley Cup to Northbrook on July 15.

The Colorado Avalanche recently won the 2022 NHL championship and the Stanley Cup. Compher is a center for the Colorado avalanche.

Compher shared the Stanley Cup at a Northbrook Park District event Friday at the Northbrook Sports Center on the same rink where Compher experienced ice hockey as a youth player for the Northbrook Bluehawks.

“Being in Northbrook today is super special for me,” said Compher. “I grew up here, played all the sports here, played hockey on this rink for a long time, so excited to see everyone who has helped me get to this point.

“There were people who played big parts, small parts, but all important, to make sure I was able to, first, live my dream as a professional hockey player and now as a Stanley Cup champion.

“That’s why it feels so good about the support I get from the people of this city,” Compher said. “That’s what makes it so special, is how many people helped me get here.”

Compher made an afternoon visit with the Stanley Cup to the Landmark Inn Bar and Grille in downtown Northbrook, wowing diners.

Earlier, Compher took the cup to a Northbrook firehouse, then to the 11:15 am sports center where a large gathering was expected.

There, Northbrook Village President Kathryn L. Ciesla presented Compher with a village proclamation with a red and white ribbon gold seal, proclaiming July 15, 2022 as JT Compher Day.

Also in attendance were Compher’s parents, Bob and Valerie Compher, as well as siblings Morgan Compher, 25, and Jesse Compher, 23, who won an Olympic silver medal with the US Women’s Olympic ice hockey team. USA 2022 at last winter’s Winter Olympics in Beijing, China.

Also in attendance was JT Compher’s girlfriend Sydney Badger of Las Vegas, Nevada.

“This is the best part of living in a city like Northbrook where everything is healthy, great,” Ciesla said.

“A child, a family, right? … of great athletes, he comes back and shares his happiness with us, he is perfect,” Ciesla said with a smile.

“It’s wonderful, this is exactly what the city needs and I think, especially after the recent events in Highland Park, I think it’s really good to remember it but move forward in a positive way,” Ciesla said, referring to the recent mass shooting in the 4th of July Parade in downtown Highland Park. “I think kids need it, parents need it.”

At the sports center podium, JT Compher called for a minute of silence for Highland Park.

The GBN ice hockey team was in attendance along with the Northbrook Bluehawks youth athletes.

“What he’s doing is unbelievable,” said hockey player Ryan Sandler, 16, of Northbrook, a rising youngster in GBN.

“Seeing a Northbrook kid like us doing something on such a big stage is great.”

Eli Frsel, 12, of Northbrook, a rising seventh-grader and player for the Northbrook Bluehawks, said, “I think it shows people that you can keep going after your dream.”

JT Compher said the Stanley Cup arrived around 8:30 a.m. Friday at the family’s West Northbrook residence. Compher took the Stanley Cup to his childhood bedroom during the visit.

His mother, Valerie, made chocolate chip pancakes and served the pancakes with syrup and butter in the top bowl of the Stanley Cup.

“My mom has made those (chocolate chip pancakes) since we were kids,” said JT Compher.

The taste of the Stanley Cup chocolate chip pancakes “was really good,” said Jesse Compher.

“It’s good to have everyone back home.”

While at home that morning, “She (Jesse) put the (Olympic silver) medal around the Stanley Cup and we were talking (about) how many brothers have an Olympic hockey medal and the Stanley Cup.

“We don’t think there are that many, so it’s special and I’m very proud of her,” added JT Compher.

Valerie Compher said of chocolate chip pancakes: “It’s the all-time family favorite, so having to share that in the Stanley Cup, I mean, how could that be bad?

“We all picked up a fork and we all took bites out of it.”

Bob Compher said, “It’s one of our favorite meals before hockey tournaments,” adding that the 10 or so chocolate chip pancakes served on Friday “with no whipped cream, just syrup” are “part of the tradition.” “.

Donations to take pictures at the sports center benefited Glenview/Northbrook Youth Services (of Glenview).

“It’s amazing to have an event like this with the Stanley Cup in our backyard,” said Amy O’Leary, executive director of Youth Services.

JT Compher joined the Buffalo Sabers via the second round of the 2013 NHL Draft and was traded to the Colorado Avalanche in 2015. His name will be engraved with the Colorado Avalanche on the bottom edge of the Stanley Cup.

“Sixty years said it would be there,” said JT Compher.

“I still have to pinch myself sometimes.

“It comes in waves, excitement and then sometimes it feels weird to even be around her (Stanley Cup).

“It’s crazy right now,” Compher added.

“To see how excited people get, kids, adults, everyone, their eyes light up and say how bright it is,” Compher also said of the Stanley Cup.

“This thing is a rock star.”

Karie Angell Luc is a freelancer for Pioneer Press.

Here are some more photos from Friday:

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