Dillon Dube has successfully defended his title.
Dube was crowned champion of fitness testing at Calgary Flames camp, topping the 67 participants for a second straight season.
He is the first repeat champion since Michael Frolik did so in camp in 2017 and 2018.
“I think that he’s getting pretty good at that,” Calgary coach Darryl Sutter said. “See his name in there just about every year he’s been here, either with the young group… He’s still the leader of the young group. That’s kind of a broad subject, fitness testing, because there’s a lot of different tests. There’s a lot of high-end guys.”
Who doesn't love fitness testing day? pic.twitter.com/uocxg1yjzw
— Calgary Flames (@NHLFlames) September 14, 2022
The honour is nothing new for the 24-year-old from Cochrane.
It’s been a running theme even before he became a full-time member of the Flames.
In 2017, Dube was second amongst his rookie peers in fitness testing behind Josh Healey and Brett Pollock. He didn’t rank in 2018, but Dube was top among Flames rookie camp testers in 2019, besting Robert Hamilton and Dmitry Zavgorodniy. That year, Mark Giordano topped the charts among all Flames, with Tobias Rieder and Frolik finishing second and third respectively.
Different testing methods were used for the 2020 camp, held in January 2021 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Back to regular testing in 2021, Dube found himself perched back atop the charts.
💪#Flames | @GoodLifeFitness pic.twitter.com/MGcs7ToN15
— Calgary Flames (@NHLFlames) September 23, 2022
“I think Dillon, him and I have talked about his, his probably February on and the playoffs, Dillon was a really good player for us,” Sutter said. “That’s what it takes now. He’s a versatile kid. Just as he gets a little bit older the whole preparation part, the maturity part of his game, takes another step. That’s what you want.”
Alternate captain Mikael Backlund finished second, and veteran Trevor Lewis ranked third.
“There’s a lot of veterans up there. it’s not about Dillon or Mikael or Trevor,” urged Sutter, who has both preached fitness and lamented the state of conditioning upon taking over the team in 2021. “That gauge or that rating is like ‘that much’ more than somebody else. That’s how close it is.
“I think we’re significantly better than last year, and last year was significantly better than the year before.”