marco polo wikipedia Former WHL blueliner helps get kids into the game
That’s why the 21 year old, and a group of fellow SFU business students, are launching a lifestyle clothing company, called Potential Apparel, that will use part of its proceeds to help disadvantaged youth participate in organized sports.
“Oh, wow, it was a huge commitment by my folks,” Dotan says, sitting outside Minoru Arenas where he spent a good deal of time on the ice. “When you consider hockey sticks alone can cost $100 each, it’s a big commitment financially. Then you have league fees, tournament fees, skate sharpening. It adds up to a lot of money.
his parents were able to provide that. But during his travels through the lower hockey ranks and into the WHL Dotan became aware how lucky he was to get an “education” on the ice.
“Growing up, I realized that when my career was over how important sports was to me, and my friends,” Dotan said. “It’s taught me many things in life. And over time I began to see how many kids couldn’t afford to play sports. And that’s unfortunate because the education you get from playing sports is just as valuable as school.”
So, using his business skills Potential Apparel was born.
To help give the business a push Dotan is enlisting the support of his many hockey buddies who now are on the cusp or have started their pro hockey careers.
Among them is former Vancouver Giants captain and now Montreal Canadiens rookie sensation Brendan Gallagher.
“Brendan is probably the perfect model we want for this company,” Dotan said. “He’s a small player who has been told all through his career he wouldn’t be able to succeed. And not only has he succeeded, he’s broken records with the Giants, and he’s made the NHL.”
It’s those kinds of lessons of perseverance, Dotan said, that sports can teach youngsters.
Gallagher and the rest of the players on Dotan’s “team” will be endorsing the Potential Apparel brand at numerous events during the off season including a charity game featuring NHL and WHL talent.
Benefitting from the $5 to $7 from each Potential Apparel item sold will be the charitable groups The Right To Play and Heros Hockey.
“The Right To Play helps children across the world play sports,” Dotanm said. “And Heros Hockey, which is a Vancouver based group,
helps kids get on the ice to play hockey.”