Even in times of Covid-19, the need never stops. Charity didn’t go away when the pandemic hit but rather, it became more important.

The CR Oilers peewee development hockey team is doing its part to help out in the community and if all goes well in this case, there could be a six-figure reward for the NWT SPCA.

The Oilers are in the running for the Chevrolet Good Deeds Cup, a national competition which sees 11 regional finalists showing off what they’re doing to make their community a better place. The finalists were announced on Hockey Night in Canada earlier this month with the Oilers being named as the Northern representative.

Brad Mueller, the team’s head coach, said getting involved was something he wanted to do.

“I’ve seen it over the past few years and it’s a great way to get kids involved and doing something good,” he said. “It’s an opportunity to teach kids to do good.”

Each finalist chose a charity or cause and submitted a one-minute video to the organizers. The Oilers chose the NWT SPCA by virtue of how attached the team is to it, said Mueller.

“Half of our team, myself included, has a rescue animal and others volunteer to walk the animals at the shelter,” he said. “We can’t go in there as a big group right now but they’re a group that’s always looking for help and so we’re hoping to get this for them.”

The CR Oilers peewee development squad is in the thick of a national battle to win the Chevrolet Good Deeds Cup and a first-place cheque of $100,000 for their chosen charity, which is the NWT SPCA. They are, front row from left, Gavin Rose, goalie coach Kent Rose, assistant coach Daniel Fainman, Hunter Froude, head coach Brad Mueller, assistant coach Julien Chalifour and Elijah Ramsay; back row from left, River Whitehead, Sebastien Chalifour, Rylan Scarfe, Blake Rose, Arthur Mupedziswa, Nolan Dusome, Grayson Mueller, Josh Soloy, Blake Remo, Peter Staples and Calen Knight.
Photo courtesy of CR Oilers

As a regional finalist, the Oilers are guaranteed $2,000 to donate to the SPCA. If they finish second or third in the national voting, they’ll receive $5,000 to give but it’s the top prize the 11 teams are battling it out for.

That’s because the winning team receives $100,000 for their chosen cause.

“It’s almost like a winner-take-all kind of deal,” said Mueller with a laugh.

In previous years, the Good Deeds Cup saw teams show off what they did and then submit their entry in the hopes of being selected for the finals. This year, because of Covid-19, organizers wanted teams to show what they’re currently doing and how the money would help continue the work being done.

“It’s a business pitch, in a way,” said Mueller. “Before, you would do a good deed, you’d log it, track it and get people to vote for it. Now, you’re showing people what you’re doing and asking people to vote so you can get some more help.”

There’s no way to tell who’s out in front as vote counts aren’t be made public but Mueller said he’s been told everyone is in with a shot at this point.

To cast your vote for the Oilers, visit https://www.chevrolet.ca/en/good-deeds-cup and look for the Oilers’ presentation.

James McCarthy

I've been hanging around the office as the sports editor for the better part of the last 16 years. In August 2022, NNSL Media decided to promote me to the managing editor's position, which I accepted after...

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