Julien Fournier receives the NHL call

Auring the summer, Julien Fournier has received good news, very good news. After a full-time season as a linesman in the East Coast league, he was noticed by the Bettman circuit officials’ supervisors, who offered him a two-part contract for the 2019-2020 season. This former member of the Hull Minor Hockey Association (AHMH) will work in both the National League and the American Hockey League.

He leaves the Outaouais at the end of the week to report to the training camp “zebra” which begins Saturday in Buffalo, after which he will go to establish his base in Philadelphia, where also resides Charron, Gatineau who did his debut in the NHL in 2010.

Saying that on the same date last year, he finished his training at the National Police School of Quebec, Nicolet, putting a career in constabulary forces on standby to try his luck in professional hockey. The 24-year-old told Law that he “was giving himself four years” to see if he could realize his dream of working in the best hockey league in the world.

“It went faster than I thought, but even if it’s fast, I feel ready. ”
– Julien Fournier

“It’s gone faster than I thought, but even if it’s fast, I feel ready,” he said on Wednesday. In the space of a year, I learned so much about this job, I gained so much experience that I am not stressed at all now. ”

Fournier was ex officio for important games last spring, both in the East Coast league and in the American league. After being released at the end of the regular season to accept an assignment at the U18 Division 1 World Championship in Grenoble, France, he returned to work in the East Coast league final involving the Growlers of Saint John, Terre -Neuve (possible champions), as well as the finals of associations in the AHL.

Saying that at the age of 12, he remembers that he was not retained by the Hockey Gatineau leadership when he applied to start officiating, like his father Daniel. “I did not take the skate test,” he recalls. It went better the following year when he applied to the AHMH, and the rest is part of his personal story leading him to the “big league”.

His mentor in the Brotherhood of Referees of the Outaouais is Serge Carpentier, a former linesman at the QMJHL level. He put him in touch with Francis Charron last year, before he made the big jump to the pros.

“I only spoke to him once, but I think I asked him 45 questions. It really helped me a lot. I can not wait to see him again at camp [in Buffalo]. I think I will have other questions for him, since he lives in Philadelphia, but also for others. Referees, we are a small family and it’s cool to see how much you can trust other referees, both on the ice and anywhere else. I feel really well supported as I start a career that I hope will be quite long, “he says. Fournier is always impressed by the welcome that a veteran linesman, Steve Barton, gave him when he worked at a Laval Rocket game at Place Bell early last season.

By climbing the ladder to a full-time position in the NHL, Julien Fournier is eager to work in a high-caliber environment. “As a referee, you really see the check between East Coast and AHL players, and I’m told it’s the same between the AHL and the NHL. This is another level and our coaching is too. The camp in Buffalo lasts five days and we will attend many conferences that will be useful to improve, “he noted.

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