Filipino American Jason Robertson was the lone representative of the Dallas Stars to play in the 2023 National Hockey League All-Star game held in Southern Florida over the weekend.
Robertson represented the Central Division in a modified three-on-three tournament. Team Central prevailed against the Pacific with a score of 6-4 in the opening round.
Robertson went on to score a goal in the championship round against the Atlantic Division but it was too little too late as the Atlantic team beat Central 7-5, notching the $1 million prize.
For the young star, despite losing in the friendly exhibition, participating in the NHL All-Star weekend was a unique experience as he teamed up with players that he looked up to and competed against during the regular season.
"Seeing all the fans with different jerseys. I think that was the best part of it. It is something that brought a lot of people together," Robertson said. "To be able to represent [the] Dallas team. It is something that I've never experienced before and hopefully I can experience many more."
The left winger also participated in the All-Star skills competition. He competed in Pitch 'n Puck, which used a combination of hockey and golf shots. Instead of swaying golf balls with clubs, the players used hockey sticks and shot hockey pucks in the green field.
Robertson marvelled how the event was a one-of-a-kind experience.
"It is something pretty fun. I am not much of a golfer with a club but you throw a stick and puck and it kind of levels the playing field for me. I didn’t win it unfortunately but I came second place. Maybe I will start golfing a little bit more to get better."
In recent years, a growing number of Asian and Pacific Islanders have been playing in the NHL.
"It's special. There’s a lot of players at this level. To be able to represent them, it is definitely humbling and I am glad I am able to do it," Robertson shared. "I think it’s just sticking with what you know and trusting the people around you."
The Dallas hockey player also takes pride in his Filipino roots and admits he can't get enough of his Lola's home cooking.
"My grandmother makes a lot of chicken adobo so whenever she makes that [I put] a lot of white rice. I usually have all of it."
Robertson is already looking forward to making it to the 2024 NHL All-Star weekend set to be hosted in Toronto, Canada.