LONDON – Just after the London Knights’ 4-1 victory over the Niagara IceDogs in the opening game of the OHL final Knights star forward Mitch Marner learned that his family home in Thornhill, ON., had been severely damaged by a fire.
Marner, who celebrated his 19th birthday on Thursday, was met by his parents in the hallway outside of Knights dressing room following the win. Paul Marner received a call from a neighbour while driving to his son’s game. He was told by the Fire Marshal that firefighters were still fighting the blaze and he would not be allowed near the house until it was deemed safe.
“It’s a scary,” Mitch Marner said, after viewing news footage of the fire on his mother’s phone. “But at least everyone is okay. No one is injured.”
The fire started just after 4 p.m. No one was inside the home at the time. York Regional Police say it’s too early to determine the cause of the fire, or whether foul play was involved.
The entire front of the home was engulfed in flames, but firefighters managed to battle the blaze and preserve part of the home. The extent of the damage is not yet known.
No one was inside the house at the time. The family’s dog, a chocolate lab named Burbank, was rescued by neighbours. Their cat, a ragdoll named Winston, was found by a rescue worker after the blaze was put out.
The Toronto Maple Leafs‘ top prospect—selected 4th overall in the 2015 NHL Draft—has dominated the OHL playoffs, leading all scorers with 39 points. He was named the OHL’s most outstanding player earlier in the week.
Marner roofed a shot from the top of the circle on a power play with 10 minutes to go in the third period, putting the Knights up 4-1. He assisted on the Knights’ third goal of the game, firing a pass from the boards to linemate Christian Dvorak who tapped the puck into the Niagara net with 25 seconds remaining in the second.