The French Connection
"Winning is always nice, but when you lose, you create that very special bond."
Lockwood and Osaka, it’s a match made in heaven. When this French defender joined the brand in 2015, nobody could imagine that he would be such a great asset and influencer. We meet up in Lille for a strong coffee and a good talk.
Lockwood: ‘I must have been eight years old when I started to play the game. My brother was actually the first one to play in our family, and he enjoyed it so much that we decided to follow a hockey camp during summer at LUC Ronchin Hockey.
It was there that we all fell in love with hockey. Even my dad got inspired and started to play. Nowadays, he is ‘the coach’ of our family. (smiles)
Hockey means much more than a sport to me. It allows you to meet new friends and teammates, and it helps you to connect in a different way with your family. The most beautiful thing about it is definitely the team spirit. There are so many unforgettable moments that you share with your teammates. Winning is always nice, but when you lose, you create that very special bond.
And as we all know, losing is also a big part of playing. Hockey brings a lot of nice memories. In our family, we always have great fun when telling our hockey stories around the dinner table. It gives us something to speak about and we always have a thousand stories and anecdotes to bring up.’
"It is not always all sunshine and rainbows, surely after some bad games."
‘What helps me a lot to keep a healthy lifestyle is setting clear goals. Just like every other athlete, I have to make sacrifices now and then. Although, I try not to think too much of the sacrifices and keep reminding myself of the real pleasure of playing and performing on the field. That is where the energy comes from and why you do it. It is not always all sunshine and rainbows, sometimes, surely after some bad games, it is quite impossible to feel the pleasure of playing. It is hard to keep that positive spirit all the time. You can’t change the outcome of certain matches, or the group dynamics, or your own performance at some moments. What you can change is your attitude. Your way of looking at things. You can always keep the positivity within yourself. In the end, that is what keeps you going, that is what brings pleasure back. Always.’
‘France is not the biggest hockey country in the world as we all know, that is also one of the main reasons I already play in Belgium for five years. Here in Belgium, hockey is one of the fastest-growing sports. The Belgian National Team became World Champion last year. This radiates to the performance in clubs as well. You definitely see progress in France too, as we have a really fantastic staff now in the National team with De Greve and Delmee.’
‘It is maybe funny to say but my greatest inspirer is my father. He is such a great fan of the game and his analysis of matches are very often on point. (if not always) He knows when he must be hard on me and when not. He is always there for me with the right words of advice. In work and in hockey. For five years, he is also putting his management skills in our indoor hockey team. To me, he is simply irreplaceable.’
Lockwood: ‘You definitely see progress in France too, as we have a really fantastic staff in the National Team now with De Greve and Delmee.’
Behind the screen
‘When I am not on a field, you for sure will find me behind the screen of my computer. Héhé, indeed I work in the digital world with my own web agency: BAAM! www.lagencebaam.com
Here you go, some spamming for my digital business. (laughs). With BAAM! We do website, digital strategy, SEO/SEA, social network, logo design, graphic design, …the whole package as they say.
Since one year, I also developed two enterprises in Champagne. The first one called: NAT’S Champagne, I do this with my family. We have our own brand in tasteful bubbles, which is quite unique. Another concept is BULLES DE CHAMPS, this is a gift box concept. When you subscribe to it, you can receive a bottle each month of a small unknown producer. It is very nice to discover some new pearls of big taste, and it gives you something to drink and talk about around the table with your friends. You can see that my love for developing new and creative projects is as big as my love for hockey.’
‘What I am looking forward too, besides turning my projects into big successes, is of course Paris 2024. Our team is already looking forward to this event and a medal would be the cherry on the cake. If that would also come with a win at the Indoor Championship, I can die a satisfied man. (MK)
For the lovers of sparkling bubbles:
BULLES DE CHAMP : www.bullesdechamp.fr
NAT’S CHAMPAGNE : www.natschampagne.co