Having a grandfather that's a hockey legend and member of the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame can be a blessing and a curse, and will certainly get you recognized. But, for Louis Nanne, it also created some obstacles, and the kid's ready to skate his own path, and make a name for himself.
The Nanne family is one of the more well known names in hockey. Spanning six decades of ice time, Lou, son Marty, and grandson Louis have all had successful careers, and helped start or continue the hockey tradition. For Stampede forward Louis, it's not always as easy as it may appear.
"You know I like to say it's just a blessing and curse. Along with it comes a lot of positives and opens some doors that may not be have been open before. At the same time it comes with a lot of scrutiny and criticism and a lot of pressure," Stampede Forward Louis Nanne said.
Lou played 635 NHL regular season games for the North Stars through the 1978 season, and also served as the head coach and general manager of the team. He understands that his success brings recognition to the family name.
"People are aware of who they are and the family that there from. Because of that they get scrutinized much more closely than other hockey players would," Hockey Legend Lou Nanne said.
Cary Eades, the Head Coach & GM of Sioux Falls Stampede didn't sign Louis because of the family name. He saw the raw skill, speed, athleticism, all of which have helped Louie to 10 points in just half a season with the Herd.
"Well it all starts with Louie's speed. He has got a great gift of golden legs that can get up and go. We've brought some more speed out of his game and taught him how to play fast," Stampede Head Coach Cary Eades said.
The Minnesota Wild noticed as well, drafting Nanne with the 188th overall pick in 2012. Nanne chose to attend college before taking his shot at the pros, and after de-committing from the University of Minnesota, he will make his own name at Ressen Polytechnic Institute. A move his grandpa strongly supports.
"Well, he wants to find his own path, and that's why he de-committed from Minnesota and his going to RPI. He has his own dreams and desires, and they include hockey. He is going to try and go as far as he can," Lou Nanne said.
Louis is well on the way to making his own mark in the family sport. He understands the importance and magnitude of the namesake, but is ready put his goals in focus and take the next step in his own hockey career.
"I've got big shoes to fill, but I've learned to be myself, and be my own person. I want to create my own shoes and my own legacy," Louis Nanne said.
Louis' father, Marty, also played professional hockey and is currently a scout with the Wild. Louis' brother Tyler recently signed with the Stampede, and is committed to playing hockey at Ohio State, next year.