THIS WEEK @RWW - 10/11/03
FROM THE WINGS: Q&A
THIS WEEKS TOPIC: What are the changes and development you typically see from a player over a the first few years of his career?
DRAPER: The rookie season, you know, everythings new to them - whole different lifestyle, whole different travel schedule. I think theyve got to find structure with what they have to do day in and day out to make sure that theyre ready. Then I think you realize what a routines going to be. You stick with it, you find out what works for you what doesnt work and I think thats all with getting experience. Weve had some great rookies the last couple years. They realize how good they can be in this league. I think thats exciting for everyone. You see a guy like Pavel comes in, we knew how talented he was and then you look at him now, two or three years later, hes like the go-to guy on our team. Henrik Zetterberg last year, runner-up for the Calder Trophy, which everyone in this dressing room felt he shouldve won. Hes just going to get better and better. I think its exciting with the rookies, find out what they can do and then also for the guys that have been around a while to kind of help these guys along, let them realize their full potential as NHL players.
You know, its a grind. Its not easy. The travel schedules tough, especially with what we have in the Western Conference. Theres a lot of travel and I think that sometimes you get worn down a little bit and theyre able to just kind of take some time off and regroup and get ready for the rest of the season.