Connor McAwkward: Fans get two minutes for holding

Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid can be an elusive target on the ice, but he was all tied up by some fans at the Edmonton International Airport on Tuesday.

The two fans nabbed McDavid on his way out to Anaheim for Game 7 against the Ducks.

The resulting photo? Well, it seems like McDavid was looking for a breakaway.

"That picture was a little bit weird," McDavid said Wednesday.

"I don't know how you're supposed to feel comfortable when they're holding you like that, so, I was pretty much in a death grip, so I was just trying to get on the plane as fast as I could."

The fans in the photo are Jimmy and Rosalina Valeriano of Edmonton. The couple was seeing their youngest daughter off at the airport after she came to visit from San Jose. 

When they spotted McDavid in the airport, Rosalina said they knew they had to ask for a photo.

"He was really nice and said, 'Sure,' " she said.

As Rosalina clutched McDavid's arm, Jimmy held his limp hand. The Valerianos flash gleaming smiles, while McDavid looked on with a strained look on his face.

One of McDavid's teammates, defenceman Darnell Nurse, said he saw the viral photo Wednesday morning.

"I don't think he was getting out of that one. He wasn't going anywhere until that picture was being taken," he said. "It's just passion right there, that's all it is, that's passion. It's fun to be a part of."

Valeriano said her entire family are big fans of the Oilers, and her children have all been sporting the captain's jersey during the playoffs. 

As surprised as she was by the random airport encounter, she's even more surprised by how the photo has gone viral online.

"I think that's the reason why I became a bigger fan. Because all I hear from them is, 'McDavid, McDavid,' " she said.

"I still can't believe it. I didn't expect it to be this big."

McDavid said he appreciates the love from the fans.

"It's exciting," he said. 

"The fans have been great, honestly. The support has been tremendous. You can definitely feel it. It's special to be in Edmonton right now."

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