CHL Stars in Cars: Saint John Sea Dogs Defenseman Thomas Chabot

Thomas Chabot of the Saint John Sea Dogs

Standing 6’2” and weighing in at 188 pounds, Saint John Sea Dogs defenseman Thomas Chabot is not the biggest D-man in the league (heck, he’s not even the biggest D-man on his QMJHL squad), but that hasn’t stopped him from having a strong year so far.

Just 22 games into the 2015-16 campaign, Chabot has already put up 20 points, 13 of which have been assists. Indeed, puck-moving defenseman like that are becoming ever more important in hockey’s upper echelons; just look at the last few winners of the Norris Trophy, given out to the NHL’s best defenseman; not since ’09 – when Boston Bruin behemoth Zdeno Chara took it home – has a winner stood more than 6’1” off the ground. Chabot, then, has them all beat already, right?

Well, whatever he’s doing (41 pts in 66 games last year, 22 in 55 the year before that as a rookie), it was enough to draw the attention of the NHL’s Ottawa Senators, who drafted Chabot 18th overall at the 2015 NHL entry draft (that makes him 5th amongst all d-men drafted this year) and have already reached out to the young prospect.

“I’m talking every week with management,” he says, all in an effort to see how his season’s going, how he’s progressing – even his diet. “They take really good care of their players.”

That’s now; what was it like this summer, around draft time?

“I was excited and it was in Florida, so we got a week’s vacation to go with it,” he says. “I think my parents were more excited than I was, though.”

Ahh, you gotta love Canadian hockey players, eh? Always so humble.

Humble, like one of the vehicles Chabot dreams of perhaps owning one day, if he signs that NHL contract and all.

2015 Ford F-150

“I really like the Ford F-150,” he says. “I like higher cars. Always.” Indeed, that truck’s world-beating FX4 off-road package would do well to serve Chabot getting to and from the Canadian Tire Centre in those harsh Ottawa winners; it wasn’t too long ago that Ford launched the truck in the middle of a harsh Quebecois winter, to prove this point.

Chabot’s current car also wears a Blue Oval, but of slightly different cut: it’s a 2009 Focus sedan.

Okay, Thomas. Sure, the F-150’s great. If you really close your eyes and let yourself dream a little, though, what would be in your driveway?

“I’ve always dreamed of a Ferrari of some kind.”

So you like a higher seating position, eh? Well, I’ve got news for you when it comes to that Ferrari you talk about…

So named because each cylinder measures 488 cubic centimetres (a convention Ferrari has adopted for its twelve-cylinder models for years), it makes a whopping – and we mean whopping – 661 hp and up to 560 lb-ft of torque at 3,000 rpm. Don’t bother looking; that’s a lot more than what was made by the F40, the former most-powerful, turbo’d Ferrari.
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Dan Heyman

Dan Heyman

Dan Heyman is a car guy through-and-through, ever since his first word was “Toyota”. Dan has worked as a full-time automotive journalist since 2010, having driven and written about everything from Abarths to Sierras and tackled race tracks from Texas to Toronto during that time.