AJ Galante Reflects on Danbury Trashers Ahead of Documentary Release: ‘We Were the Bad Guys’
The Danbury Trashers take center ice for one final time tonight (8/31/21) at the Danbury Ice Arena.
The saga of the bad boy hockey team, their notorious owner (Jimmy Galante) and their teenage President (AJ Galante) are featured in a new episode of the documentary film series "Untold" debuting on Netflix.
In true Galante fashion, the debut has turned into an event at the Ice Arena, where the show will be screened free for the public. Jimmy Galante, AJ Galante and former Danbury Trashers team members will be in attendance to watch the movie for the first time with residents of the Hat City.
Previous episodes of "Untold" cover the stories of Caitlyn Jenner and the The Malice at the Palace. The "Untold" series comes from the Producers of another hit doc for Netflix Wild Wild Country and they had their work cut out for them.
What story should they tell first? The story of Jimmy Galante, the hockey owner with alleged mob ties? The story of the team's high school aged President? Or, do you tell the tale of one of the most violent teams in hockey history? Any of those on their own would make a great background for a sports documentary, but this one will have it all plus the crazed fans and the FBI.
For a national audience, this will likely be their first introduction to the Bad Boys of Hockey, but we are very familiar here in the city of Danbury. Or, at least we believe we know the whole story.
We know that Jimmy Galante bought a hockey team. We know he made his son the team's President. We know that the team for was famous for fighting, the players were paid under the table, Jimmy was charged with a wide variety of racketeering crimes. And finally, we know Galante struck a plea agreement and served time in prison. But what do we really know about the people that lived the story, like AJ?
Before the Netflix documentary can answer some, or all of these questions, we wanted to grab a hold of AJ and see if we could beat them to the punch.
What was it like growing up with a reputation he had no control over? What did he think of his time as the hockey prince of the Hat City? And, what did it feel like being compared to Anthony Junior from the Sopranos?
Galante joined a radio show on Monday (8/30/21) and was asked all of those questions and more.
Lou: How would you describe you, your father, the Danbury Trashers players, staff and the fan during the team's run?
AJ: "I wish I had a better phrase but we were the bad guys, we were the bad boys. You know, I actually think I said it in the Netflix documentary, and if I did they're probably going to eat it up but my Dad, I was raised, you know he always cheered for the bad guys in movies and I ended up cheering for the bad guys in wrestling. I know that sounds stupid but I just loved the bad guy. And I felt he had so much more of an impact. When I would go to a show or I had events, people were flipping him off, throwing stuff at him and I'm like you know what? This is where it's at.
Lou: What was it like getting compared to AJ (Anthony Junior) from the Sopranos when you were young?
AJ: I would rather be compared to a hornet, a pig, whatever, an animal, It doesn't matter. I mean, it was the worst thing in the world when that show was going on and I remember first he was referred to as Anthony which was OK. And then, it kind of morphed into AJ which was a little weird but oh man, that kid. I mean, I'm no prize winner myself but Jesus, that was a bad, bad comparison.
Lou: How do you handle being a local celebrity at such a young age?
AJ: I was very aware of, I guess my perception, you know Dad buys his son a team and ba-ba-ba. You know it was hard at times because I was still a kid and I never wanted, I pride myself on being pretty humble, I think I'm a humble person, even back then. So, I think I actually kind of WWF'd it. I kind of knew my character, you know the son gets handed a team so I kind of amplified a little bit of my character and I'd be talking trash up there and you know, we had a good time with it.
Ethan: What went through your mind when your Dad says "so you want to be President of the hockey team?"
AJ: Well, my Dad has a funny way of, he's telling you what you're going to do but he wraps it as a question. So, it's kind of like, 'hey AJ, what do you think? I'm going to start a team,' which, first of all my Dad is a very serious person, when he says something he means it but even for me, when he said that at dinner that night I thought he was, I didn't know if this was some sort of test or something but I'm like yeah sure Dad, start a team, that makes sense. Sure, I'll be a President and he just kind of does this slow nod of approval like OK, you know good. Good answer son.
You can listen to the entire thing interview in the video player at the top of the page.
The Danbury Ice Arena event is free to the public on a first come, first serve basis and the the concessions stand will be open. Doors open at 5:30 pm, the movie will be screened at 7:30 pm and there will be a Q & A session with producers at 9 pm.
Why do I look mad? I wasn't mad I just look it, and AJ looks pretend happy.
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