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Ask the Leafs: Tom Fitzgerald

by Staff Writer / Toronto Maple Leafs
Welcome to a new feature on mapleleafs.com where you can ask a question of a member of the Maple Leafs each week and see selected answers posted here. You will also be able to see the answers on FanCam, one of the more popular shows on Leafs TV.


Recently, we had the chance to do a Q+A with Tom Fitzgerald, who shared his thoughts about coming to the Leafs and a few other subjects:

Q: Hello from Nashville, how have you and your family adapted to life in Toronto?

Fitzgerald: We've adjusted pretty well. I think when you have young kids like we have, one of the big questions is how the kids will adjust? They've done great. They've met a lot of really good friends and they are playing youth hockey. They are looking forward to the winter. I promised them when I signed with Toronto that I would build them a rink in the backyard. So they are very excited about that.

Q: You are a defensive forward, how have you had to adapt to the Leafs offensive style?

Tom Fitzgerald is a big baseball fan.
Graig Abel Photography
Fitzgerald: Well, sometimes maybe early on here I've got caught up with thinking too much offence rather than playing the low-percentage plays. I just need to stick to doing what I do best and that's simplifying my game rather than making those passes that are being intercepted. Again, keep it simple, it's great to work with the guys with the offensive power that we have, but again I know what I can do and I try to do the best that I can.

Q: How did it feel to be named the first ever Nashville captain?

Fitzgerald: It was quite an honor to say the least. It was a very proud day for myself. When you look around the league and your wearing a letter that guys like Ray Bourque and Mark Messier wear who are representing their teams, and me being the first Captain representing the Nashville Predators, it was a very proud day.

Q: What is the transition like coming from a less publicized team to the hockey mad city of Toronto and the intense media?

Fitzgerald: It's an adjustment to say the least. But, I knew this when I came here. I knew what it was going to be like. Every camera on you, every eye is on you, you can't let anything slide by the media here. But it keeps everyone accountable, it keeps guys on their toes and hopefully keeps us playing at our best.

Q: What are your main goals this season?

Fitzgerald: First and foremost it's to help this team win the Stanley Cup. Really that's the only goal, to get my name put on the Stanley Cup along with my teammates and be a part of something very special here in Toronto.

Q: As a veteran forward what advice do you give young hockey players?

Fitzgerald: The most important thing is to have fun. There is too much pressure on kids by parents and coaches. There are 700 players in the NHL. Not every kid who plays hockey can play in the NHL, but every kid can have fun and learn from the game. Also, education I think is the biggest thing kids need to strive for. Having a good education you can always fall back on and you can do anything you want in life.

Check back in upcoming weeks for the next installment of ASK THE LEAFS.

Previous ASK THE LEAFS include:
Rick Ley
Carlo Colaiacovo
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