Alumni Update: Chayse-ing the Dream

Chayse Primeau

Philadelphia Flyers Elite alumnus Chayse Primeau, son of former Philadelphia Flyer Keith Primeau, is off to a strong start in his junior season at University of Nebraska Omaha. He was recently featured on CollegeHockeyNews.com, with the full article below.

Chayse-ing the Dream

Primeau Family Adds Another Star in UNO’s Top Scorer

by Avash Kalra/Senior Writer (@AvashKalra)

The Nebraska-Omaha junior forward was born in Charlotte, N.C., in 1997, where his father Keith — the third overall selection in the 1990 NHL draft — was just beginning his first season with the Carolina Hurricanes, following several seasons with the Detroit Red Wings. Keith Primeau played 909 NHL games, including his final six seasons with the Philadelphia Flyers. During that time, Chayse and his siblings grew up in New Jersey, close to Philadelphia. And Chayse wasn’t even three years old when his father scored in overtime, against Pittsburgh, to end the longest Stanley Cup playoff game in modern history.

The hockey genes extended beyond Keith, of course. Keith’s younger brother Wayne played 774 NHL games for seven franchises. And Chayse’s older brother Cayden was a standout goaltender for Northeastern before signing with the Montreal Canadiens. In his final season with Northeastern, Cayden helped lead the Huskies to the Hockey East title and won the Mike Richter Award.

Playing with the name “Primeau” on his jersey, then, comes with some degree of expectation that Chayse Primeau, at Omaha, has — over time — come to terms with.

“You look up to your parents,” said Primeau, who says hockey was rarely discussed at home during his formative years. “My dad obviously being a pro hockey player and me watching him, you try to pick up on anything and everything that he does — at the rink, at home, how he treats his body, the little things.”

Primeau has plenty of family to turn to, for advice before and after games although cites his grandfather as a major influence — even during this season while the Mavericks play at home in Omaha, as the host of the NCHC ‘pod.’

“He’s the smartest out of all of us in the hockey sense,” Primeau said. “They all still give me pointers.”

It’s been a good week in the pod for Primeau and his teammates. Following a 1-0 loss to Miami last weekend, the Mavericks have earned eight out of a possible nine points in the NCHC standings — shutting out St. Cloud State, 2-0, on Sunday, followed by a pair of comeback efforts against Minnesota-Duluth and Western Michigan.

On Wednesday, despite facing a 2-0 deficit against Minnesota-Duluth heading into the third period, Omaha rallied for a 2-2 tie, then earned the extra NCHC standings point with a shootout win. And on Friday night, Omaha fell behind 3-0 to Western Michigan, only to rally for a dramatic 6-5 win.

Against the Bulldogs, Primeau had a goal and assist in the third period, before scoring the shootout winner. Against the Broncos, Primeau notched two assists and then the game-winning goal late in the third period.

“Coach [Mike Gabinet] stresses work ethic,” Primeau said. “He preaches that he cares more about us competing. He was preaching, ‘Don’t give up. Stick with the game plan.’ We pushed back, got one early in the third, then got one late.

“We’re really happy with the team that we have. We want to prove to the hockey world that we can play with the big boys now. You’ve seen that over the past few games. We’re not going away.”

Through nine games, Primeau leads the Mavericks with 12 points, already over halfway to the 20-point total he achieved last season, during his sophomore campaign.

“I think the big thing for me is confidence, honestly,” Primeau said. “You get more and more of it as the years have gone by. It’s a huge credit to the team and Coach Gab, and having faith in me. Putting me out there in opportunities to have success.”

Primeau and the Mavericks close out their compressed ‘pod’ schedule against Colorado College on Monday. After a 10 day break, they’ll face a big test with four consecutive games against North Dakota. For now, Omaha sits in second place in the NCHC standings, though still with plenty of room to improve. After all, “some good things and some things we have to do better” is the message from Gabinet after every game, says Primeau.

And of course, as this unique 2020-21 season continues, there’s more opportunity for Primeau to get some pointers. He’s got plenty of people to ask.

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