Ottawa's Jason Spezza: A Spezzial Senator by NHL | Dec. 24, 2003
Ottawa's Jason Spezza is one of the most heralded young players in the game. The 20-year-old centerman is in only his first full season with the Senators but his name has been familiar around the league for several years. Spezza played for Brampton of the OHL in 1998-99, and became the youngest player ever to perform in the OHL All-Star Game in 1999 at age 15! A year later, he became one of only four players to play for Canada as a 16-year-old, when he played at the World Junior Championships. You might have heard of the other three players who achieved that feat—Wayne Gretzky, Eric Lindros, and Florida's young sensation Jay Bouwmeester—three of the most highly regarded hockey talents in the history of the game.
Jason's size, speed, and skill with the puck tantalized scouts around the league and made him the second overall pick by the Senators in the 2001 NHL Entry Draft in Sunrise, Florida. The Mississauga, Ontario native was the key to the blockbuster deal that sent Alexei Yashin to the Islanders in 2001, and the move is already proving to be one of the most important in Senators' history. Jason recorded an assist in his first ever NHL game in Boston on October 24, 2002, and five days later, he scored his first NHL goal against Flyer goaltender Roman Cechmanek. In fact, in 33 games with the Senators last year, Spezza had 21 points—scoring seven goals and adding four assists. This year, Spezza is on pace for a thirty-goal/fifty-point season—numbers Sens' fans hope will vault the defending President's Trophy winners into this year's Stanley Cup Finals.
There's no question that expectations have been even bigger than the 6'2 206 lb. centerman. All of Canada has been talking about him since he was 15 and if he continues to elevate his game the way the Senators hope he will, soon he will be the talk of the entire hockey community. Keep an eye on Spezza and Ottawa this year as they make a run for Lord Stanley's Cup!
What is your favorite home-cooked meal? Tuna steak, rice and veggies
What is your favorite hockey movie? Slapshot
What was the last concert you went to? Matchbox 20
Who was your favorite hockey player growing up? Mario Lemieux
Where is your favorite vacation spot? Cancun, Mexico
What do you do when you don't have a hockey game? Watch movies, play Playstation2
Ever been punk'd? Not really but the guys are always up to something
What aspect of being in the NHL gives you the greatest pleasure? Getting to play the game for a living
Describe a perfect day off. Sleep in, watch some football and then go to a movie
Who do you share a room with on the road? Bryan Smolinski
If you could have one superpower, what would it be? To fly - you'd never have to wait in traffic again
What music do you listen to before a game to pump you up? Anything that is upbeat
Do you get nervous before a game? If so, how do you deal with it? Not really, I'm a pretty relaxed guy. I try to focus on what I have to do to play well.
Real World or Road Rules? Real World - they have a great house and have tons of fun
Name: Jason Spezza
Hometown: Mississauga, Ontario (Canada)