It's been a whirlwind week for Vincent Trocheck.
First he played in a game against Tampa in Sunrise last Thursday. Then he was off to Los Angeles for All-Star weekend which was his first appearance. Tuesday night he played very hard in a wild 6-5 comeback victory against Ottawa back in South Florida.
The next night he was in Saginaw, MI, where the Saginaw Spirit retired his #89 jersey, a first for the organization.
Trocheck played in Saginaw from 2009-2013 and credits his time there as vitally important to becoming the player he is today.
He spoke to the media briefly before hundreds of people lined up to meet Trocheck during an autograph/picture session.
After the signing session came the retirement ceremony, which was a great tribute to Trocheck who has meant so much to the area.
Trocheck might end up being Dale Tallon's best draft pick when it's all said and done. By his own admission, Trocheck had a chip on his shoulder after being picked 64th overall in the 2011 NHL Draft. In his last season in the OHL he tallied 60 goals and 73 assists in 78 games, including the playoffs.
Despite those eye-popping numbers, teams were concerned with his size and skating, passing on him for the first two rounds. Tallon knew he wouldn't be available much longer and pulled the trigger at the beginning of the third round. Trocheck has proved to be a diamond in the rough.
Trocheck has carried much of the load for the Panthers over the last few months as they try to get healthy. His consistent play landed him in the All-Star game, as well as enjoying a handsome 6-year $28.5 million extension last summer.
He is leading the Panthers with 18 goals and 34 points and has played every game this season. As a key member of the team's core, it appears he is on the verge of becoming a household name.
If the accolades he has received over the last week are any indication, it's already started.