David Ayres (born 12.8.1977) is Canadian ice hockey player and the operations manager at the Mattamy Athletic Centre in Toronto. Ayres is best known for playing in his first NHL game on 22.2.2020 as an emergency backup goalie for the Carolina Hurricanes when their both goalies was injured in a same game.

Early life

David Ayres is a native of Whitby, Ontario. His late father and his brother were goaltenders and so was David. Ayres Working as a building operator at Ricoh Coliseum, which is the home arena of the Toronto Marlies. The Marlies equipment man found out that Ayres was a goalie, so Marlies’ head coach Sheldon Keefe started using him as a goaltender at practice when extra man was needed – so did the Maple Leafs. In his official career, Ayres played eight games with Norwood Vipers in 2014. His career was not the biggest success story – he allowed 58 goals in 8 games and had save percentage 77%. Norwood Vipers lose all games that Ayres played. David Ayres has also served as a backup to Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs affiliate) and Charlotte Checkers (Carolina Hurricanes affiliate) in the AHL.

One NHL appereance

On 22.2.2020, both Carolina Hurricanes’ goaltenders (James Reimer and Peter Mrazek) were injured during a game against Toronto Maple Leafs. In NHL, there is a rule that if both visitor team goalies get injured, home team have to arrange backup goalie. David Ayres was available, he loans Kasimir Kaskisuo’s old Toronto Marlies helmet and pads and signed one-game contract with the NHL and entered the game at 8:41 left in 2nd period.

Carolina Hurricanes was leading 3-1 when Ayres entered game. Teuvo Teräväinen made goal to the Hurricanes and they were leading 4-1. After that, Ayres allowed two goals after first two shots that he faced and game was 4-3 to Hurricanes. Everybody thought that it was only matter of time, when the Maple Leafs made more goals, but surprisingly Ayres did not allow any more goals. In third period Ayres stopped 8 shots and Carolina won 6-3. Ayres became the first emergency goaltender to record a win in NHL history. He also became the oldest goaltender (42 years and 194 days) to win his NHL regular season debut.


David Ayres Young Guns hockey card will be soon uploaded, stay tuned!