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Posted: March 30, 2012

Dubie comes full circle

The Columbia Valley Rockies of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League have announced that they have brought a familiar face back to the organization.

The Rockies announced earlier today, via Facebook, that Wade Dubielewicz will be serving as a goalie coach and sharing his professional hockey experiences with the club for next season.

An Invermere resident, Dubielewicz has played 43 regular season games and a single playoff tilt in the National Hockey League, for the New York Islanders, Columbus Blue Jackets and Minnesota Wild, posting an 18 win, 17 loss, two overtime/shootout loss record, with .914 save percentage and 2.65 goals against average.

Undrafted, Dubielewicz was signed as a free agent by the Islanders on May 26, 2003 after a record-breaking couple of seasons with the University of Denver Pioneers.

He was sent to the American Hockey League Bridgeport Sound Tigers, where he played parts of five seasons, winning the Dudley ‘Red’ Garrett Memorial Award as top rookie in 2003/04.

Another highlight of that season was sharing goaltending duties in the AHL all-star game, for Team Canada, with Fernie resident David LeNeveau, then a Phoenix Coyotes prospect.

The highlight of his NHL career was in 2007 when he helped lead the surprise Islanders into the playoffs. He spent most of that season breaking club goaltending records with Sound Tigers, and was called to the show when the club’s two NHL goaltenders were injured.

He started in the Islanders final five games of that season, posting a four win, one loss record. More importantly, the 5’10” “Dubie” provided clutch goaltending that helped the Islanders squeak into the post-season.

And squeaking in they did. In the final game of the season, with the Islanders facing a must-win situation or they would fail to make the playoffs, Dubie allowed a goal with less than one second remaining in the game, forcing overtime and then a shootout, against the game’s most accomplished goaltender, Martin Brodeur of the New Jersey Devils. Dubielewicz held the fort and the Isles moved into the playoffs with a 3-2 win.

Dubielewicz’s march to hockey’s highest level began in Invermere where he displayed his trademark athleticism, which made up for his smaller stature. From Invermere, he traveled southeast to Fernie to play a season with the Ghostriders, before playing two seasons in the BCHL with the Trail Smoke Eaters and Chilliwack Chiefs, before enrolling at Denver.

His final season in pro hockey was last year, 2010/11, in Germany with the Cologne Sharks. He also played 21 games in the Kontinental Hockey League in Russia, with Kazan Ak-Bars.

Ian Cobb/e-KNOW

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