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Adam Hall Answers Your Questions

by Staff Writer / Tampa Bay Lightning
Last week fans on filled the inbox with questions for Adam Hall. This week you get your answers. While there isn't time to answer all the questions, here are the best of the best. Stay tuned next week for a different player!

Name: Brett Leblanc
Hometown: Port Hope, ONT
Question: Adam, do you have any favorite sports teams? If so, who?

You know, even growing up as a kid, I never watched a ton of sports on TV. I was always too antsy. I always wanted to be outside running around with my friends playing sports rather than just sitting still and watching on TV. But, I’ve definitely come to have more appreciation for some teams in towns where I’ve played. Even last year I became a bit of a Rays fan and enjoyed the success they had last season. I was able to go to some World Series games and some playoff games and just really take in the atmosphere surrounding that.

Name: Alex Chirillo
Hometown: Englewood, FL.
Question: Adam, I have noticed your stick handling and I find it very impressive. Is stick handling something you work on a lot in the off-season? Do you find stick handling a very important part of your game?

Yeah, I think it has to be an important part of everyone’s game. It’s something that you can never work on enough. I constantly try and improve on my stick handling and it’s something you can always be really creative with, too. I never stop trying to invent new moves or learn new things because you never know what’s going to surprise your opponent. The more strength and the more control you have, the quicker you are, all those things are going to help.

Name: Victoria
Hometown: Orlando, FL
Question: What is one thing that no fan knows about you?

I’m trying to think…let’s see. Maybe that I flew a plane once? I was living in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and I was playing in the U.S. Under-18 National program there, and my billet parents, Mark and Linda Smith, set up a discovery-type program to get young people interested in flying. There’s a small airport near Ann Arbor and I went up with a licensed instructor. The instructor sat in the pilot’s seat and I was just sitting next to him in the co-pilot’s seat. You fly in a little four-seater Cessna, a single prop plane. He let me taxi it out to the runway and take off, which was pretty simple – and the instructor let me fly it around town. You’re only a few hundred feet above the ground so I flew right over the house I was staying in and all around the neighborhood. It was really, really cool. I think the instructor handled all the landing stuff, thank goodness.

You know what? It was really an eye-opening thing and I’ve thought several times since then about maybe even pursuing a pilot’s license. A player I’ve played with, Ty Conklin, the goaltender, has his own plane; a float plane. He has a summer place on a lake in Maine where he pulls the plane right up to his dock.

Name: Megan
Hometown: Largo, FL
Question: What is your favorite restaurant? Also, if you weren’t playing hockey, what would you be doing?

My favorite restaurant? It’s tough to pick just one. I’m going to have to say Ocean Prime. It’s a newer place with a cool atmosphere and great food.

If I weren’t playing hockey? That’s a good question. There are a lot of things I’ve thought about doing. I have a degree from Michigan State in Finance so I’ve always been interested in investing, so maybe I’d start my own investment company or work for another investment company. Also, I’ve thought about going back to school and getting a law degree and becoming a player agent or player representative. I’ve also thought about going into coaching or even some level of scouting. Obviously, I’d love to stay in hockey as long as possible because I think it’s something that never leaves you. When you love something that much and grow up with something your entire life, it becomes ingrained in you. I’d love to be involved in the game for the rest of my life, whether I get paid for it or not.

Name: Jacob Melusky
Hometown: Allentown, PA
Question: What do you think about the addition of Victor Hedman on defense and Antero Niittymaki in goal? Will this help Tampa Bay's defense situation on keeping the puck out of the net?

I think they are both great additions. Victor Hedman was the highest touted defenseman in the entire draft. I haven’t had a chance to meet him yet, but just from what I’ve seen when I’ve watched him play a couple of times on television through highlights, he’s impressive. His skating ability and his size and he seems to have a maturity level about him which will help him make an impact right away.
And Nittymaki is just an excellent goaltender. He’s a great professional and I think he’ll definitely help make an impact on our team.

Name: Peter Carey
Hometown: Oldsmar, Florida
Question: As a great third line player with great work ethic and that "never give up" attitude, what are your goals for this year?

You always want to improve on everything you have done before. Obviously last year was a tough year for our entire team but personally, I ended up with a small tear in my abdominal muscle. I had to play with it for probably the last six or eight weeks of the season. I had some post-season surgery on it but that definitely sticks in your mind and it’s almost a good thing, because it’s that much more motivation for me to get back in shape and work that much harder to improve. When you are losing and you don’t have success, whether on the scoreboard or the scoresheet, everything affects the team game. You always strive to improve and make sure we have a great start to the coming season.

Name: Wade Crocker
Hometown: Tampa
Question: Hey Adam, I was just wondering what it was like playing in Finland during the lockout and what, in your mind, are the major differences between physical play in Finland and the NHL?

The biggest difference was how dark it was there and how cold it was. During the middle of winter it gets down to only four or five hours of daylight, so I just remember how dark it seemed all the time. During some of those hours of daylight I would be at the rink. I’d go to the rink for practice in the morning and it would be dark, and then I’d come out and it had already been daylight for an hour or two. That meant I’d only have two or maybe three hours of daylight left and then it would be dark again. It took some getting used to.

But, I had a great experience playing over there. I met lots of great people and was treated really well. I think it’s a very good level of hockey in Finland and there are certainly lots of great Finnish players in the NHL so that proves that they are a good hockey nation.

Physically, I think the NHL is by far the most physical league. I think the NHL has the best players on the planet and the most physical players. Every player that is the best at what he does is in the NHL. That’s not to say there aren’t some great players in Finland. It’s a great level of hockey and they use Olympic-style ice so the rink size is a little bit bigger so you see a lot more of a free-skating, finesse game. That adds a different dynamic to it. It’s also harder to play a physical-style game in Finland when you can’t finish a check as well because the ice surface is larger.

Name: Melissa
Hometown: St. Petersburg, FL
Question: Do you like any other sports beside hockey? If so, what? Do you like any local teams?

I mentioned the Rays but I also try to keep track of the Bucs as much as possible. Obviously, with the Super Bowl being in Tampa last year, we all got together to enjoy the game at one of our teammate’s house. Some of the guys went down there to the game and had the chance to enjoy it in person. The Bucs are definitely something I keep track of and enjoy watching with some buddies.

Name: Amanda Swalby
Hometown: Venice, FL.
Question: Adam, is there one hit that you gave or received that you will never forget?

I’m trying to think of a really big one…I remember one game when I was with Nashville. We were playing against the Red Wings – it might have even been in a playoff. Chris Chelios was coming around the net and I came at him full steam and tried to put my shoulders to him. We both just basically ended up in a big pile in the corner. I think his helmet went flying off and stuff like that.

Chris Chelios is such a renowned player and such a respected player for so many years – I think that’s the sort of thing you tend to remember. You always remember if you score a goal against a really big name goalie or do something well against a star player.

Name: Patrick Hall
Hometown: Kalamazoo, MI
Question: So who really shot the puck through Mrs. Haman's basement window, you or your brother Mike? - Dad

Ha! I’m going to blame my brother on that one. I think we were maybe, like, 10-years-old – my brother Mike is about a year younger than I am. We were both right around nine or 10 years old and we’d always be real competitive – maybe because we were so close in age. We’d play hockey in the driveway and basketball or baseball or football. I mean, you name it, we’d just kind of do everything and play one-on-one. We had a lot of really competitive hockey games in the driveway. But I’m going to blame my brother for our neighbor’s basement window.

Mrs. Haman wasn’t too happy about that and my dad has been trying to get to the bottom of that question for the last 15 years or so.
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