The Calgary Flames’ 2023 development camp has wrapped up, and there were tons of interesting stories. It’s always exciting to get a look at potential Flames stars of the future. While Flames draft picks were there, like 2023 16th overall selection Sam Honzek, there are also invitees that are undrafted. One of the invitees this year was right winger Oliver Peer, who lit up the OHL with the Windsor Spitfires last season. He had people excited, due to the strong season and cool story of overcoming adversity in his playing career.
The Win Column was able to talk with him about his hockey journey so far. My chat with him is included below.
Oliver Peer’s time with the Windsor Spitfires of the OHL
You were passed over twice in the OHL Draft, to scoring over a point-per-game in the OHL, to attending an NHL Development Camp. What does your success thus far mean to you?
To me, my success proves that anything is possible. There have been years where everybody counted me out. They never thought I could make it this far. It means a lot to me knowing I have overcome so much adversity very early on in my career.
Wyatt Johnston played with the Spitfires during your first season with the club. What was it like playing with him, and how cool is it to see the success he’s having in the NHL now?
It was awesome playing with Wyatt. He is a great hockey player and a great person. I looked up to him a lot during my first year in the OHL. It’s awesome seeing him play in the NHL now, it doesn’t surprise me that he has already found success at that level.
In your first season, the Spitfires went all the way to the OHL final. What was that experience like?
Going all the way to the OHL finals was the best time of my life so far. We had an incredible run with a great group of guys. I learned a lot going that far in the playoffs and it is something that I will never forget.
What were some reasons for your success in the OHL this past season, where you had 67 points in 63 games?
This year I was fortunate enough to play with some great players. We found good chemistry and helped our team produce points. Also, Marc Savard helped me take a big step last year giving me lots of opportunities and always giving me pointers on playing and thinking the game at a higher level.
Marc Savard and his impact on Peer’s game
Marc Savard was your head coach with Windsor, now he finds himself behind the bench as an assistant coach with the Calgary Flames. Can you tell us about Marc’s coaching style, and the impact he’s had on your game?
It’s not surprising to me that Savy is moving up to the next level after winning our conference back-to-back years. He is a creative coach who isn’t afraid to think outside of the box to throw off the opposition. He has had a big impact on my game helping me become a smarter and more effective hockey player. It was an honour to learn from a guy like him for the past two seasons.
What is a fact or funny story about Marc Savard that the Flames fanbase needs to know?
One fun fact about Marc Savard is that he loves taping sticks. It got to a point during our season where he would tape half of our team’s sticks before games.
Time at Calgary Flames development camp
What was your favourite highlight or highlights from Flames development camp?
Development camp was awesome. They did a great job of making it fun and engaging. My favorite part was going to Banff and eating at the top of a mountain. It was beautiful and I have never done anything like it.
Was there anything specifically the Flames development staff helped you work on?
The development staff was great. One thing they really helped me with was picking pucks up off the wall. It is something that happens a lot in games and I am glad I could spend some time learning how to do it from the best.
Skating is seen as one of the strong points of your game. How much do you put into that facet of the game?
Skating is something that is very important in today’s game. I am always trying to get faster and more powerful. I put a lot of focus into building a strong and powerful lower body.
Who is your go-to artist to listen to pre-game?
What is your guilty pleasure snack or junk food?
What does the rest of the offseason look like for you?
I had the chance to talk to the development staff about what I should focus on for the rest of the summer based on my fitness testing results. I will continue to work on every aspect of my game focusing more on upper body strength.
We would like to thank Oliver Peer for taking time to chat with us, and thank you to his agent Ken Hornick who made him available to us.
Photo via @SpitsHockey on Twitter.