New York Islanders forward prospect Joshua Ho-Sang is not only wide awake, but determined to take whatever steps necessary to reach the NHL.
One year after oversleeping on the first day of Islanders training camp, Ho-Sang has enlisted the help of his longtime friend, Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid, and Dallas Stars center Tyler Seguin for advice and guidance.
So far, Ho-Sang, the No. 28 pick in the 2014 NHL Draft, has been a sponge.
"I feel comfortable asking [McDavid] questions," Ho-Sang told Sportsnet on Saturday. "I found that when we played together (with the Toronto Marlboros Minor Midget AAA team in 2011-12), we do a lot of things similar. He thinks the same the way I do, but faster, obviously. What he's learned can be beneficial to me. I want to be as good as him, or better.
"But it's not just Connor. Tyler Seguin, I talk to him, ask questions. It comes from a place of wanting to learn, to take what they know and become more effective. I'm picking apart the mind of one of the best goal-scorers in the world."
Ho-Sang, 20, averaged more than a point per game with 292 points (82 goals, 210 assists) in 256 games with Windsor and Niagara of the Ontario Hockey League the past four seasons.
Those statistics alone will not allow Ho-Sang to attain his ultimate goal with the Islanders.
"I've got to earn their trust back," he said. "I feel I have to do that every day. Keep getting better. Keep showing them what I'm willing to do.
"There's no day off. There's not a practice I leave early. There's not an optional skate I don't skate at. It's optional, but not for me."