IN THE NEWS
DAVIDSON BUILDS CONFIDENCE IN SOPHOMORE SEASON
By Carter Baum,
Seventeen months ago, hockey was the furthest thing from Brandon Davidson's mind.
On Nov. 1, 2012, it was announced that the Edmonton Oilers' 2010 sixth round draft pick was diagnosedwith testicular cancer and immediately began undergoing treatment. Just over three months later, Davidson returned to the ice, but the mental and physical fight for his life had taken its toll on his rookie season - appearing in only 37 regular season games between the Oklahoma City Barons and Oilers' ECHL affiliate, the Stockton Thunder.
This year, in his sophomore season with the Barons, the Lethbridge, Alta. native was able to focus on hockey, and hockey alone.
"It was huge for me," Davidson said. "I felt like I actually had a full season to establish myself and just not worry about other things, just worry about hockey. It was a great year for me personally."
Despite a slow start to the season, Davidson was able to find his game in the second half of the season, along with the rest of his team, as the Barons pushed to make the Calder Cup Playoffs for a fourth straight season. Davidson finished the season with five goals and 13 points in 68 games played, with 11 of his 13 points coming over his final 40 games.
"I think my confidence was huge," Davidson said. "It played a big role in how I was playing and I've always been a guy to work hard, so for those two things to clash together at the right time, I think it really helped me personally."
As a team, Davidson says that the growth and success of the young roster late in the season leaves plenty to be excited about for next year.
"We went through a lot as a team. We had a lot of interchanging parts throughout the season with guys going up and down. I felt that we weathered that pretty good. We stuck together all year long and we made a push at the end of the season to even put us in the playoffs," Davidson said. "It's exciting to see what will happen next year and I'm really looking forward to it."
Davidson is going into the final season of his entry level deal with the Oilers in 2014-15, and is looking to take another step in development, with hopes of playing in the NHL.
"It's a big summer for me and I'm going to take advantage of it," Davidson said. "Just another summer of working hard and getting ready for next year."
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