Giant smiles as players deliver fan-donated teddies

Belfast Giants player Michael Quesnele help deliver teddies at the RVH in Belfast. Credit: UTV

The Belfast Giants topped off a great weekend on the ice with a win off it, when they started delivering teddies donated by their fans to sick children in hospitals around Belfast.

Captain Adam Keefe was joined by Colin Shields, Michael Quesnele and Brandon Benedict as they visited the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children on Monday.

The players got to hand over some of the more than 1000 teddies thrown on the ice at their SSE Arena home on Saturday.

“Any time we can give to people in the community, it’s a great thing to be involved with,” Keefer told UTV.

“And obviously our fans are the ones donated these bears, so it’s just a great message to send going into the holidays.”

It was the Giants’ all-time leading goal-scorer Colin Shields who fired in the opening goal of the game, putting his team 1-0 up over their Sheffield Steelers rivals.

A crucial goal on any night, but this time, it was also the cue for fans to get involved in the now annual Teddy Bear Toss.

“It was nice to get the goal and kinda start things off on the night the right way,” Shields smiled.

“Just to see the support, that the fans showed up with so many bears, it was great.”

He added: “We’re so fortunate to be able to lead the lives we do and play ice hockey – it’s nice to be able to give a little bit back.”

Colin Shields and Michael Quesnele pose for a picture with a young patient. Credit: UTV

The Giants went on to take an important 2-1 win over the Steelers, before following it up with another win on Sunday when they travelled to Manchester to face the Storm.

But the organisation’s ethos has always meant that community is at the heart of everything they do.

“It really shows you that there’s more to this than the hockey side of things,” Quesnele said.

“There are some people struggling with things we wouldn’t even dream of and to come here and put a couple of smiles on some kids’ faces, it’s really a good feeling.”

Adam Keefe and Brandon Benedict sort through just some of more than 1000 teddies donated by Giants fans. Credit: UTV
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