Jordan Eberle and Martin Jones knew that perhaps life milestones were coming soon.
But what were the odds they would happen on the same day?
Both Eberle and Jones had wonderful new additions to the world on Friday, on the eve of the Seattle Kraken hosting the Pittsburgh Penguins at Climate Pledge Arena. Eberle and wife, Lauren, welcomed newborn son Deacon while Jones and wife, Alex, welcomed son Rory.
Both players will be taking the ice, with Jones the starting netminder against the Penguins, 7pm PT (93.3. KJR / Kraken Audio Network).
“The first is always nerve wracking,” Eberle told 93.3 KJR-FM, who confirmed Deacon was born at home on Friday night a little past 7pm.
“You feel a lot more comfortable for sure, but at the same time you applaud your wife for doing the work. It’s amazing what they can do.”
Eberle’s on the cusp of finishing an eventful week, when he gained his 600th career NHL point on Thursday against the Canucks and is ready to face a team he’s enjoyed statistical success against, scoring 13 goals in 30 career games against the Penguins. He said when their daughter, Collins arrived it changed his perspective on life, allowing to create healthy boundaries between home and the demands of an NHL player.
“I think that was the biggest thing I loved about being a dad calmer, more even-keeled,” Eberle said. “If anything, it helped my hockey game. Those two things went hand in hand.”
Jones was unavailable to speak to the media this morning, but earlier told the Kraken Audio Network he and Alex were looking forward to the big milestone, now celebrating the arrival of their first child.
“We’ve got a nice schedule where we’re home a lot in November, which is great,” Jones said.
He’ll have plenty of time at home for father duties. The Kraken, after playing in Pittsburgh on Nov. 5, won’t play a road game for the next 19 days. As a new father at age 32, Jones comes in with solid numbers against the Penguins, a team he battled against when the Sharks pushed their way to within two wins of the Stanley Cup in 2015-16. At a 6-5 record in 12 career appearances, he owns a .927 save percentage and a pair of shutouts.
Pittsburgh lost in Vancouver, 5-1 last night and will close out a five-game road trip tonight with a big of a banged-up roster. Teddy Blueger, Jake Guentzel, and Jason Zucker have missed 14 combined games, but are still buoyed by a healthy Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang, who have been together for 17 years.
Crosby leads the Penguins with 11 points in seven games.
Head coach Mike Sullivan will tie a Penguins franchise record tonight, coaching in the 516th game of his Penguins career and tying Ed Johnston.
KRAKEN PROJECTED LINEUP VS. PITTSBURGH, 10/29: