Kevin Estrada

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Original short description: "Canadian ice hockey player and conservationist"

POV! Template:Infobox ice hockey player Kevin Estrada (born May 28, 1982) is a Canadian former professional ice hockey forward. A standout in junior A hockey, Kevin still holds several records still from his 4-year career with the Chilliwack Chiefs.

Career

Junior hockey

The pinnacle of his BCHL career was making the RBC National tournament where the team came 3rd and he was awarded top scorer of the tournament, earning 2 game MVP awards. The following year he earned the Brett Hull trophy for most points, 118 in 59 games played, this number of points has not reached since he left the league in 2000. Among several team awards of the years with the Chiefs he is still the youngest player at 15 to play for the team and the youngest captain at age 18.

Prior to turning professional, Kevin attended Michigan State University, where he played four seasons of NCAA Division I ice hockey with the Michigan State Spartans men's ice hockey team. In his freshman, year Kevin won Student-Athlete of the year for MSU, the first for a hockey player at MSU. Durning his 4-year career he won the GLI tournament and reached the NCAA tournament twice. Kevin graduated with a bachelor of Science degree with a focus in Business and Kinesiology.[1]

Minor league hockey

Estrada was selected by the Carolina Hurricanes in the 3rd round (91st overall) of the 2001 NHL Entry Draft.

His pro career started under contract with the Carolina Hurricanes, Kevin played 2 full season in the AHL with their affiliates, the Lowell Lockmonsters and Albany River Rats. Kevin declined an AHL contract with the Albany River Rats and returned to British Columbia to play for the Victoria Salmon Kings, halfway through the season he was called back up to the AHL and played for the Manitobia Moose. Kevin then signed to Europe in 2008–09 to play for Herlev Hornets, serving as team captain in the elite league in Denmark. Part way through the season, he left for the elite league in Germany called the DEL. Following a successful first year in Europe, various teams from multiple leagues were interested in signing the 27 year old.

After surviving a plane crash in June 2009, Kevin went to play in the elite league in Slovakia and then Swiss B league in Switzerland before taking 19 months off from hockey for health reasons. He last played with the Ontario Reign in the ECHL. He served as an Assistant captain and was a top scorer and fan favorite on the team. Estrada did not play during the 2010–11 season due to injuries from a plane crash in the summer of 2009.[2]

Conservation

After three unresolved hernia surgeries, two torn shoulders and lingering injuries from the crash, he ended his professional career after two half seasons in the ECHL with the Ontario Reign. Currently owner of the Internationally recognized conservation based guided fishing business called Sturgeon Slayers (www.sturgeonslayers.com), a catch and release fishery in British Columbia. Sturgeon Slayers has been featured on National Geographic, Discovery Channel, BBC Earth, World Fishing Network, WildTV, Barstool Sports, and Googan Squad among others. In 2012 Kevin participated in a TV program called King Fishers which took cast and crew to BC, Brazil, and the UK. Kevin won the title King Fisher. Durning the filming Kevin guided the largest Sturgeon ever recorded on TV. Measuring 10'5 fork length with a 66" pectoral girth, estimated weight was over 800 lbs.

Since 2010, Kevin has run the Fly Fishing Film Tour in Canada (F3T) with his partner Mariko Izumi. F3T travels across the country showcasing the years best short films from handpicked outdoor film makers. The Film promototes conservation and proceeds from each Canadian showing go towards charity. 9 years and over $100,000.00 has been donated back to local initiatives through the F3T. In 2020, Kevin and Mariko decided to focus on other businesses and no long run the F3T in Canada.

Kevin served on the board of directors for the Fraser River Sturgeon Conservation Society (FRSCS) for 4 years until Jan 2020, Fraser Valley Angling Guides Association since 2009 and the Fraser River SportFishing Alliance since 2016. He is heavily involved in keeping conservation at the top of the sport fishing industry in BC and advocates for the opportunity in sustainable sport fishing industry as British Columbia has seen fishing opportunities lost to other sectors over the years. Kevin is a leader in the Sturgeon Tagging Program on the Fraser River and hosts a yearly fishing event with NHL player and former teammate Andrew Ladd the Ladd Foundation. The event features NHL stars and participants raising money for Mental Health and Sturgeon Conservation. Over $300,000.00 has been raised for these initiatives after 3 years.

On November 30, 2018, Estrada successfully had the first Sturgeon related certified petition accepted by the House of Commons in Ottawa. Sponsored by MP Fin Donnelly, the petition asks the federal government for funding, implementation and support transition from gill net fisheries that negatively impact Sturgeon, to more sustainable salmon harvesting techniques. In October 2019, Kevin was mentioned in MP Fin Donnelly's farewell speech as one of the many world leaders he has had the pleasure of meeting and working towards a most sustainable planet.

Sturgeon Slayers is a verified account on Instagram and Facebook. Social media platforms have been their driving force in helping spread awareness for Sturgeon. Along with social media, Kevin elevates issues in person to political leaders and decisions makers both provincial and federal around the impacts related to Sturgeon. Their social following is atop the world for Sturgeon.

Kevin is also the Chief Business Devleopment officer for Duncan Keith (www.duncankeith.com)

Kevin and his partner Mariko Izumi own and operate Izumi Estrada Media, representing professionals for content development, social media, and partnerships. They have two children together and reside in Chilliwack, BC.

References

External links