Rare Punjabi roots: Surrey rookie Jujhar Khaira jumps to NHL with Oilers

For Edmonton Oilers, he's played mostly on the team’s fourth line in five games

Surrey's Jujhar Khaira

When Surrey’s Jujhar Khaira recently suited up for the Edmonton Oilers, he became just the third player with Punjabi roots to play in the NHL.

Khaira, 21, a first-generation Canadian, was selected by the Oilers in the third round of the 2012 draft.

Prior to his call-up, Khaira had been playing for the Bakersfield Condors, the Oilers’ AHL affiliate. The left-shooting centre’s first NHL game was on Nov. 28 in Pittsburgh against the star-studded Penguins.

Robin Bawa and Manny Malhotra, both of whom played for the Vancouver Canucks during their careers, are the only other NHL players of Punjabi descent, according to Surrey-based broadcaster Bhupinder Hundal, who works the Punjabi-language hockey games on CBC.

Khaira seems to be taking it all in stride.

“It’s obviously cool hearing the stat and all that, but at the end of the day, I feel like everybody is on the same spectrum,” Khaira told the National Post.

“You want to make it regardless of race. I put enough pressure on myself as it is.”

For the Oilers, the six-foot-three, 214-pounder has played mostly on the team’s fourth line, but has at times found himself skating with top-gunners Taylor Hall and Leon Draisaitl.

As of Wednesday, Khaira has netted one assist in the five games he’s played in the NHL.

His brother Sahvan, 17, plays for the Seattle Thunderbirds of the WHL.

tom.zillich@thenownewspaper.com

 

 

Just Posted

Stabbing at Surrey banquet hall sends man to hospital

RCMP says victim has ‘non-life threatening’ injuries, incident still under investigation

55-year-old man taken to hospital after fire at Surrey RV park

Firefighters find man suffering from smoke inhalation, burns to face and hands: battalion chief

Slam poetry creates catharsis for North Delta youth

Burnsview Secondary team gearing up for poetry festival and competition in April

South Surrey parking ticket perplexes, frustrates

Theresa Delaney predicts more people will be wrongly ticketed

B.C. students win Great Waters Challenge video contest

Video, mural and song about saving the salmon claims the top prize

B.C. athlete takes home gold in freestyle aerials at Canada Games

Brayden Kuroda won the event with a combined score of 121.65.

Pedestrian in serious condition after hit by car downtown Abbotsford

A youth was also hit, suffered minor injuries, police say

Cabinet likely to extend deadline to reconsider Trans Mountain pipeline

The can’t decide the pipeline’s fate until a new round of consultations with Indigenous communities

B.C. government provides $75,000 towards salmon study

Study looks at abundance and health of Pacific salmon in Gulf of Alaska

Murdered and missing honoured at Stolen Sisters Memorial March in B.C.

‘We come together to make change within the systems in our society’

UBC researchers develop inexpensive tool to test drinking water

The tricoder can test for biological contamination in real-time

Disgraced ex-Congressman Anthony Weiner released from prison

He was convicted of having illicit online contact with a 15-year-old North Carolina girl in 2017

Most Read