Gillies Back for More and his Nova Scotia Ties
Halifax, NS - The Halifax Thunderbirds announced today that the team has re-signed veteran transition player Brad Gillies to a one-year contract.
"I can't wait to be back in Halifax," said Gillies. "The momentum as a team and organization from last year makes it a really exciting thing to be a part of. I am excited to see what the future holds."
Gillies just completed his fifth season in the National Lacrosse League and fifth with the franchise. He saw action in 11 games, scoring two goals and adding three assists. Gillies collected 34 loose balls in the 2019-20 season.
"Brad has been with us for a few years now and each and every year he gets better," said Owner and General Manager Curt Styres. "He transitions his game and adapts to the current model and we are thankful he has signed with us for another year."
In his career, Gillies has played in 70 games, scoring 24 goals, adding 31 assists, and scooping up 301 loose balls. The Oakville, Ontario native has won the team's community service award for the past three seasons (2017-19).
In life picking up up an moving from one chapter to the next is not always seemless. For Brad Gillies, the move from Rochester to Halifax was made slightly easier with his family ties to Nova Scotia, and the summer memories he made as a kid. As Brad recalls, "my best summer memories were spent on family vacations by the Northumberland shore in Pugwash at my grandparents' house."
As a kid, Brad's mother Kim, grew up in Nova Scotia in the small community of Collingwood. She attended high school in Oxford and then later pursued her university career at Acadia, where she would eventually meet her husband Ken. Soon after graduating, the two got married and moved their lives to Oakville where they raised the Gillies boys; Sean and Brad.
Having spent years in Halifax, Brad's father found himself traveling back to play in the 'Lobster Festival' during his midget years of lacrosse. As the older brother, Sean took a liking to lacrosse and later influenced Brad's pursuit of the sport from minor lacrosse, through juniors. Following the long summers of lacrosse, the Gillies family would pack up for their summer trip back to Nova Scotia.
Fast forward a few years and now the family is only a short, two-hour drive to watch the younger Gillies son play the sport he fell in love with as a kid. Both his aunt and uncle have attended almost every home game and their parent's great friends, from Acadia, were amongst the first people to get their hands-on season tickets. The Wood family can be found in their own cheering section with many other friends and new lacrosse fans.
When asked about the growth of lacrosse in Halifax, Gillies said, "To me playing in Nova Scotia has meant a ton. It has always been my second home and a place that is close to my heart. Never in my wildest dreams as a kid would I have thought pro lacrosse would be here, let alone I would be playing for that team."
Regarding his family, "My mom has a lot of pride being from Nova Scotia as does her family, so for me to be able to play here I know that means the world to them, and I am proud to do it."
As Brad now plays in the city he once traveled to religiously, he recalled some of his favourite childhood memories of their yearly trips. Golfing at Northumberland, themed kids parties in the Gathering of the Clans in Pugwash (Bluenose 4), boarding the Bluenose when the tall ships came to Pugwash, playing catch with the lacrosse sticks on the sandbars, and overall being reunited with aunts, uncles and cousins.
Not many kids get the chance to turn pro in the sport they love. Even fewer get to become a professional athlete in their dream city. For Gillies, he has fortunate to have done both.
Season Ticket Member packages are on sale for the 2020-21 season. Call or text the Halifax Thunderbirds Ticketing Department at 902-334-2333. Fans can also email [email protected] for customer support.
Keep up to date at halifaxthunderbirds.com or follow the team on all their social media platforms @HFXThunderbirds. Season Ticket Member packages for the 2020-21 season are available online at halifaxthunderbirds.com or by calling or texting 902-334-2333. Get on board today to receive exclusive benefits and watch the fastest, most exciting, game on two feet.
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National Lacrosse League Stories from July 20, 2020
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