Hendersonville, Tennessee native Josef Newgarden was born and reared in stock car racing territory, but his first two loves in sports are not ones that are typically associated with the area.
Newgarden is a lifelong Nashville Predators fan who drives for Team Penske in the IndyCar Series for a living.
“The Preds have been here ever since I was a young, little boy,” Newgarden told Pierre McGuire as the two watched the teams warm up from behind the glass at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. “I used to come watch these games all the time when I was a kid. And you know what, most of the people I grew up with were hockey players. So it’s a good little relationship with hockey and now a little bit of racing with me coming out of Nashville.”
To give a glimpse at the danger Newgarden might face as the Predators face the Minnesota Wild, McGuire showed a clip of an incident in a game he commentated two weeks ago between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Columbus Blue Jackets when a rogue puck narrowly missed hitting him in the head.
To keep McGuire safe, Newgarden gave McGuire a race helmet like the one he uses in IndyCar.
For more, watch the video above.