BOMBERS ADD ROOKIE FORWARD THONGPAITHOON
The Long Beach Bombers are proud to announce the signing of forward, Jason Thongpaithoon. The 5’11, 160lb left shot was born in Norwell, Massachusetts, and currently lives in Santa Monica. He will likely be the youngest player on the Bombers, with a birthdate of August 6, 2001. Last season, he played for the California Wave U16 team.
The rookie winger has spent the last few seasons moving from hockey in Massachusetts, to Hong Kong, to Southern California. In Hong Kong, Thongpaithoon was coached by Craig Falite, a 2001-2005 Quinnipiac University hockey player, and teammate of Long Beach Bombers Head Coach, Chris White. Last year, Thongpaithoon’s California Wave team finished with an 11-3-3 record, good for 2nd place in CAHA. This off-season, the recently-turned-18 year-old has been busy preparing for his rookie season, playing in tournaments such as the Chowder Cup, in Boston.
Long Beach Bombers Head Coach & General Manager, Chris White, commented, “Jason is a young player with a great attitude and perspective. He is very aware that he is taking a big step up the hockey ladder, and will be challenged on a daily basis. I would not be surprised if he is one of the most-improved players on the roster, by year’s end. We think he is going to come in, work hard, be a good teammate, and have a positive influence on the team. We’re hoping to develop Jason to the best of our ability, and push him to become an impact player, at some point. He has four years of junior eligibility in front of him, and will have some fantastic role models within the forward group."
Jason’s Player Profile:https://www.eliteprospects.com/player/513446/jason-thongpaithoon
Q & A with Jason Thongpaithoon:
Last season, your California Wave team finished 2nd, with an 11-3-3 record. How did the year go for you, personally, and for the team?
Last season, our team was successful with our speed and skill. We won games by playing our game; moving the puck and scoring goals. Last season was huge, developmentally, for me. On the ice, I learned my role as a player and how to work on it. As a fast and hard forechecking forward, I spent numerous amounts of time working on my stride and battling in the corners. Off the ice, I spent most of my time working on building strength in the gym, and worked on agility on the field. Both on and off ice, I further delevoped skills to grow as a player.
You will now make a big jump to Tier-ll Junior A hockey, and likely be the youngest player on the team. What are you focused on, this year?
This year I am determined to work hard to have an active role on the team, even if it’s not the same as last year. I think it’s important when joining a new team to discover and explore your role. Once I find where I fit in as a young player on a junior team, I’m going to have to work very hard to be the best player I can be, for me, and for the team.
Your off-season has been quite busy. How do you feel about your development, the past few months?
This summer I have played with many different teams in different showcases, tournaments, and leagues. In almost all of my skates, I’ve been focusing on playing heads-up, smart hockey. Doing this, I’ve grown more and more confident with the puck over the off season and been able to use my skill more. I have also continued training in the gym to stay in shape.
You have had a very unique path in life, and in hockey. Where have you played, prior to signing with Long beach?
Growing up in a small town in Massachusetts, I started playing hockey for town and club teams. At the age of 14, I unexpectedly moved to Hong Kong, and played for a Global Select team. There, I traveled to many different countries and saw many different styles of play. After returning from Hong Kong, I moved to California, playing a season with the Wave. Now, I am excited to start my season with the Bombers.
In Hong Kong, you were coached by a former Quinnipiac University teammate of Bombers Head Coach Chris White, Craig Falite. How much did that factor into your decision to sign, and what were some other factors that weighed-in?
When first moving to California, Craig Falite suggested that I play for the Bombers. Having just moved, and not completely settled in, we weren’t able to commit to a junior team’s schedule, last year. Craig’s recommendation definitely pointed us in the direction of the Bombers, but looking at the team myself, I saw that I wanted to play at a higher level of competition, which the Bombers offer. I think that playing with older players will push me to work harder, and I will gain a lot of experience.