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New York Rangers Star Is a Hero for Rumsey Hall


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WASHINGTON—Brandon Dubinsky pushed the puck up the ice quickly, maneuvering with deft grace around a concentrated perimeter of opponents.

Fans know and defenders rue his fearless charge, a stormy style whose efficacy is denoted by his top scoring rank on the New York Rangers.

But when approaching the goal and the gaggle of players surrounding it, the NHL star suddenly turned conservative. Mr. Dubinsky abandoned the assault, and eased up as he approached the scrum.

Had he been playing against the NHL powerhouse Pittsburgh Penguins or even the dismal New York Islanders, perhaps he wouldn’t have shown so much restraint.



Winning Auction Bid

Forbearance has no place in professional hockey. Monday afternoon, however, scrimmaging with the Rumsey Hall Blue Dogs—the junior prep school’s varsity boys and girls hockey teams—the 24-year-old professional kept it light.

A day after an unfortunate loss to the Ottawa Senators, the Alaska native was in Washington as part of a winning auction bid. For Mr. Dubinsky, the pressure-free volunteer event in rural Connecticut was a welcome break from the competitive atmosphere of New York City pro hockey.

“This is really a great time. It’s so nice to get out of the city for something like this,” said the four-year veteran during a brief break in the action. “This is such a beautiful place, and the people here are very inviting and warm.”

At an October auction to benefit the school, former Rumsey Hall parent Robert DiTullio won a private shoot-around with Mr. Dubinsky. Louis “Skip” Gardella, a Rumsey Hall alumnus and a board of trustees member acquainted with the Rangers’ left wing, for the second year in a row negotiated such a package. Continued...

Last year it was a trip to Madison Square Garden for a game and a private meet. This year, what with the school’s two-year-old Lufkin Rink such an alluring venue, Mr. Dubinsky came here.

“In the live auction in the fall, [Mr. DiTullio] won an hour of playing time for his family,” said Mr. Gardella. “But he gracefully said [Mr. Dubinsky] could spend some time with the Rumsey hockey team.”

So for the first period of Mr. Dubinsky’s visit, it was with five members, both old and young, of the extended DiTullio family. For the second, he went back-and-forth with the varsity team players, which was only, like, the greatest moment of their lives.

Ask Logan Adams, a ninth-grade center for the Blue Dogs and an avid Rangers fan.

“It’s awesome, it’s a dream come true, I couldn’t ask for anything better,” said the student athlete, as he waited anxiously to get back on the ice. “I’m a big fan of him.”

Even for the team coach, Ted Moore, the visit was reminiscent of a childhood dream meeting reality.

“For me it’s a blast, I’m a Rangers fan,” added Mr. Moore, who said the visit allows his players a chance to realize their potential. “This gives them a sense of what kind of opportunities they have.”

Donated by namesakes Dan and Cynthia Lufkin, proud parents of two current enrollees at the school, the rink has opened up better sporting prospects to Rumsey students and is also used by other institutions.

Indeed, before the rink was installed, the Rumsey Hall boys hockey team was forced to practice at other schools, and the girls team was nonexistent. Now the expanded hockey program can gather at its own demand, and the school can host practice with a major NHL player.

“This is pretty exciting, and the rink is a big deal because we’re the only junior boarding school that has an ice rink in Connecticut,” noted Director of Communications Carol Maxwell, a mother of two Rumsey Hall graduates and two current students. Continued...

It was exciting, even for Mr. Dubinsky. He remembered how thrilling that time was, back when he was a teenager, and NHL star Scott Gomez came for a practice at his Alaskan summer camp. A quirk of fate, it wasn’t their last meeting; only a few years later Mr. Dubinsky and the now 30-year-old Mr. Gomez were Rangers teammates.

Who knows, maybe in another five or six years, Mr. Dubinsky will rack up Rangers’ goals from the assisting stick of a Rumsey Hall Blue Dog.

“The best part of all this, knowing that the kids really enjoy it,” said Mr. Dubinsky. “That’s what means so much to me.”
WASHINGTON—Brandon Dubinsky pushed the puck up the ice quickly, maneuvering with deft grace around a concentrated perimeter of opponents.

Fans know and defenders rue his fearless charge, a stormy style whose efficacy is denoted by his top scoring rank on the New York Rangers.

But when approaching the goal and the gaggle of players surrounding it, the NHL star suddenly turned conservative. Mr. Dubinsky abandoned the assault, and eased up as he approached the scrum.

Had he been playing against the NHL powerhouse Pittsburgh Penguins or even the dismal New York Islanders, perhaps he wouldn’t have shown so much restraint.



Winning Auction Bid

Forbearance has no place in professional hockey. Monday afternoon, however, scrimmaging with the Rumsey Hall Blue Dogs—the junior prep school’s varsity boys and girls hockey teams—the 24-year-old professional kept it light.

A day after an unfortunate loss to the Ottawa Senators, the Alaska native was in Washington as part of a winning auction bid. For Mr. Dubinsky, the pressure-free volunteer event in rural Connecticut was a welcome break from the competitive atmosphere of New York City pro hockey.

“This is really a great time. It’s so nice to get out of the city for something like this,” said the four-year veteran during a brief break in the action. “This is such a beautiful place, and the people here are very inviting and warm.”

At an October auction to benefit the school, former Rumsey Hall parent Robert DiTullio won a private shoot-around with Mr. Dubinsky. Louis “Skip” Gardella, a Rumsey Hall alumnus and a board of trustees member acquainted with the Rangers’ left wing, for the second year in a row negotiated such a package.

Last year it was a trip to Madison Square Garden for a game and a private meet. This year, what with the school’s two-year-old Lufkin Rink such an alluring venue, Mr. Dubinsky came here.

“In the live auction in the fall, [Mr. DiTullio] won an hour of playing time for his family,” said Mr. Gardella. “But he gracefully said [Mr. Dubinsky] could spend some time with the Rumsey hockey team.”

So for the first period of Mr. Dubinsky’s visit, it was with five members, both old and young, of the extended DiTullio family. For the second, he went back-and-forth with the varsity team players, which was only, like, the greatest moment of their lives.

Ask Logan Adams, a ninth-grade center for the Blue Dogs and an avid Rangers fan.

“It’s awesome, it’s a dream come true, I couldn’t ask for anything better,” said the student athlete, as he waited anxiously to get back on the ice. “I’m a big fan of him.”

Even for the team coach, Ted Moore, the visit was reminiscent of a childhood dream meeting reality.

“For me it’s a blast, I’m a Rangers fan,” added Mr. Moore, who said the visit allows his players a chance to realize their potential. “This gives them a sense of what kind of opportunities they have.”

Donated by namesakes Dan and Cynthia Lufkin, proud parents of two current enrollees at the school, the rink has opened up better sporting prospects to Rumsey students and is also used by other institutions.

Indeed, before the rink was installed, the Rumsey Hall boys hockey team was forced to practice at other schools, and the girls team was nonexistent. Now the expanded hockey program can gather at its own demand, and the school can host practice with a major NHL player.

“This is pretty exciting, and the rink is a big deal because we’re the only junior boarding school that has an ice rink in Connecticut,” noted Director of Communications Carol Maxwell, a mother of two Rumsey Hall graduates and two current students.

It was exciting, even for Mr. Dubinsky. He remembered how thrilling that time was, back when he was a teenager, and NHL star Scott Gomez came for a practice at his Alaskan summer camp. A quirk of fate, it wasn’t their last meeting; only a few years later Mr. Dubinsky and the now 30-year-old Mr. Gomez were Rangers teammates.

Who knows, maybe in another five or six years, Mr. Dubinsky will rack up Rangers’ goals from the assisting stick of a Rumsey Hall Blue Dog.

“The best part of all this, knowing that the kids really enjoy it,” said Mr. Dubinsky. “That’s what means so much to me.”

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