BIG RAPIDS — It’s been one whirlwind week for Garrett Thompson.
And it could culminate with the Traverse City native making his professional hockey debut Friday.
Thompson, who played three years for the Traverse City North Stars before a four-year standout career at Ferris State, signed a contract with the Ottawa Senators.
“It’s kind of bizarre,” Thompson said. “You spend four years in college and get comfortable and you know everybody. The more you’re there, you become a familiar face. Going to a new type of realm is going to be different, but I’m excited for the experience and am glad that it worked out the way it did.”
After Ferris was knocked out in double overtime of Saturday night’s Midwest Regional by North Dakota, Thompson flew back from Cincinnati, received a call from the Senators on Sunday, made his decision to sign Monday, drove up to Traverse City on Tuesday morning and took a 2 p.m. flight to New York.
“When I was coming here (New York), I didn’t know anyone in particular,” Thompson said. “Then Ryan Dzingel from Ohio State, I met him at the airport and he had made his decision that night, I think. So he and I flew from Detroit to here and we’re roommates in the hotel and going through the same experiences. It’s nice to have someone in the same shoes as you.”
He could suit up Friday in jersey number 17 for Binghamton’s American Hockey League contest at the Rochester Americans.
Thompson’s deal is an amateur free-agent tryout for Binghamton’s remaining nine regular-season games, and then a one-year, two-way contract for the following season.
Binghamton is first in the AHL’s East Division with a 40-21-1-5 record. The B-Sens play in the same conference as the St. John’s IceCaps, the team fellow Traverse City native Zach Redmond was promoted from Sunday to rejoin the Winnipeg Jets.