Tallman selected as most valuable player for AJHL’s Canmore Eagles

Tuesday, March 19th, 2024 10:13am


Image Caption

Brody Tallman of the Kainai Nation is the Canmore Eagles' most valuable player of the 2023/24 season. Photos courtesy of the Canmore Eagles


“It’s all thanks to my teammates and my coaches. I couldn’t have done it without them.” —Brody Tallman
By Sam Laskaris
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Brody Tallman’s final season of junior hockey is a success.

Tallman, a member of Kainai Nation in Alberta, was selected as the most valuable player for the Canmore Eagles for his efforts during the 2023/24 Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL) campaign.

Earlier this year, Tallman, a 20-year-old defenceman, also accepted an offer to join the Grant MacEwan University Griffins in Edmonton starting with the 2024/25 season.

Tallman’s focus right now, however, is on Canmore’s playoff run. The Eagles are in the midst of their AJHL best-of-seven quarter-final series versus the Lloydminster Bobcats.

The series is deadlocked at 1-1. Canmore will host the next two games on March 19 and March 20.

“We are super confident in that room,” said Tallman, who is the Eagles’ team captain. “I’m confident we can play well. And we do have the potential to go deep in the playoffs.”

Just getting by the Bobcats though would be considered an upset.

That’s because the Eagles finished in seventh place in the standings of their 11-team league with a regular season record of 25-29-2-1. Canmore ended up 13 points behind the Bobcats, who finished second in the standings with a 33-24-0-0 mark.

Tallman and his teammates are satisfied with how their post-season is going so far.

“We split our first two games in Lloydminster,” Tallman said. “We’ll take a win out of that. We did what we wanted to. Now we’re coming home for two games and hopefully we’ll win those.”

Thanks to four powerplay goals, including a pair from Tallman, the Eagles downed Lloydminster 8-3 in their series opener on March 15.

The Bobcats evened the series at a game apiece with a 4-3 double overtime victory on March 16. Tallman earned an assist in that match.

Tallman and the Eagles had some work to do just to get to their series against Lloydminster.

Canmore squared off against the Fort McMurray Oil Barons in a best-of-five play-in series for the right to advance to the AJHL quarter-finals. The Eagles swept that series 3-0.

Tallman was credited with three assists in those three outings.

He also racked up his share of points during the regular season. Tallman collected 45 points (17 goals and 28 assists) in 52 games.

“It was exciting,” Tallman said of his team MVP award. “It’s all thanks to my teammates and my coaches. I couldn’t have done it without them.”

It’s worth noting that while Tallman was chosen as the Eagles’ MVP, it was one of his Canmore teammates, Brody Mortensen, who was selected as the AJHL’s top defenceman.

As for his future, Tallman, who was born in Kelowna, B.C. but primarily grew up in the Alberta city of Lethbridge, is pleased that he will be playing university hockey next season.

“I talked to a few schools in USports (the name of the national organization for university athletics in Canada),” he said. “I just felt Grant MacEwan was going to be the best fit for me.”

Tallman plans to work towards a Bachelor of Arts degree while suiting up for the university’s hockey squad.

It has been some time though since Tallman was last a student/athlete. He graduated from high school in 2021.

“It’s going to take a minute to get back into it,” he said of his academic career.

While he has committed to attend Grant MacEwan, Tallman is hoping at some point to launch his pro career.

“I think that’s obviously the goal,” he said. “Anything can happen.”

Tallman said his cousin Wacey Rabbit, a former pro player who is now an assistant coach with the Western Hockey League’s Saskatoon Blades, is frequently offering him advice.

Rabbit, also a Kainai Nation member, and Tallman usually talk about once a week on the phone.

“He’s a big role model of mine,” Tallman said.

Local Journalism Initiative Reporters are supported by a financial contribution made by the Government of Canada.