Family Feud: Foligno vs. Foligno

 

The Foligno family relationship has always been something special.
But a new twist will come Tuesday, when Ottawa Senators winger Nick Foligno plays against the Anaheim Ducks, which now boast his father, Mike Foligno, as an assistant coach.
“I’m obviously excited,” said the younger Foligno, who had planned to meet up with his father when the Ducks arrived in Ottawa late on Monday. “It will be good to see him, but it will also be so different, playing against him.”
The Folignos are as close knit as hockey families can be.
When Nick played for the Sudbury Wolves in the Ontario Hockey League, Mike served as head coach and general manager for his hometown team. Marcus Foligno, a Buffalo Sabres draft pick and a star for Canada at the world junior tournament, also played for Mike in Sudbury.
But when Janice Foligno — Mike’s wife and the boys’ mother — died following a long bout with breast cancer in 2009, the elder Foligno opted to make a change in his life, moving from Sudbury and joining the staff of Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle. Carlyle, Foligno and fellow Ducks assistant coach Dave Farrish all played with the Sudbury Wolves during the 1975-76 season. 
While it has been a terrible season for the Senators, the Ducks are a surprise team in the Western Conference, clinging to seventh spot before Monday’s action, with a record of 25-19-4.
If it means anything, Nick has been the Senators most productive forward in the past week. With two goals and two assists in his past three games, that passes for a hot streak for the goal-starved Senators. Perhaps the appearance of his father will create even more motivation, but Nick says he’s not sure what to expect.
“It’s going to be really weird,” he said. “It’s going to be cool. I’ve got a lot of family coming down from Sudbury. I’ve got a whole (luxury) box for everyone, so it should be fun.”
Now, if both Nick and Mike are in the building, won’t there be mixed allegiances from that Sudbury crowd?
“They better be Senators fans,” Nick said, with a laugh. “Otherwise, I’m making them pay for the box.”

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