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Stanley Cup Final

Sharks' Dillon uses music as outlet from hockey

In NHL.com blog, defenseman says playing guitar helps him 'chillax' off the ice

by Brenden Dillon / Special to NHL.com

San Jose defenseman Brenden Dillon will be keeping his own blog throughout the course of the Stanley Cup Final. Dillon will check in after games and on some of the off days in between games.

Here is Dillon's blog from Sunday, the day after a 3-2 victory in Game 3:

This time of year, it's hockey all the time for us and that is great. But during the season, you try to get away from the game sometime and one of the big things for me is playing guitar.

I'm not fantastic at it by any stretch, but it's fun. I lived with Burnsie (Sharks defenseman Brent Burns) for the first three months of the season. When I got here for the season, I got a condo and was getting it renovated, so I lived there. Burnsie has 10 or 15 guitars and he is really good, so that's how I got into it. I'd known a couple of chords, so I treated myself and got a nicer guitar this year. I live alone, so I have a lot of down time. In between Netflix and eating and whatnot, I like to chillax, open a window and play a couple of songs.

It's nice to do things outside of hockey. For all of us, hockey is a big part, if not the biggest part, of our lives. Some guys that have families, their kids are able to get them away. For me, I played piano for nine years and I love listening to music. So for me with the guitar, I want to get better and better and better. 

I love all kinds of music, everything from John Mayer to country. I listen to everything. If you looked at my iPod right now, I have everything on there. From Drake to Luke Bryan, to Florida Georgia Line, to G-Eazy, a rapper that is from around here that I have gotten into lately. I'm a big country guy. I like to go to the Calgary Stampede; I've been five or six times. Music is a big thing in my life. Even when I get home late from a road trip and I am unpacking my bags, I like to get some songs going.

My best song I can play on the guitar is "3 AM" by Matchbox 20. When I was in the minors in Austin, Texas, Luke Gazdic of the Edmonton Oilers, was on the team and he is a really good guitar player. In the minors, everyone is around the same age and everyone is looking for things to do while living the bachelor life, so my roommate and I would go over there for dinner a lot. On that song, I didn't know what chords they were, I just knew where to put my fingers, so that has always been a staple for me. I have tried to perfect that one and have gotten pretty good at it. When people ask me to play, I usually start with that one.

I enjoy doing other things too, like going to the movies with guys on the team, going for walks. Whatever it is to get up off your couch or after taking a nap.

It's really nice to do so many things here in the Bay Area. You have Santa Cruz Beach, which is a 30-minute drive, you have downtown San Francisco, which is 40 or 45 minutes away. I love baseball and I have been to many San Francisco Giants games already this year, I went to a 49ers game early on. If you are a golfer, there are so many different golf courses. I have been here for near two years now and I haven't done nearly as many things as I should have done. There's always something to do on your days off.

I love to go out to eat too. Usually on an off day, a bunch of us will get together to get a bite to eat. I'm a big food guy and I love anything from steak to Italian to seafood to sushi. Around here, there are so many good food places. For me personally, we eat so much pasta and chicken, I like to get away from that when I can. I would say my favorite thing to have is sushi.

I didn't know much about San Jose when I got traded here. Usually, you fly in and you fly out. When I did get here, I learned so much. It's definitely a bit more residential, more family-based area. For a younger guy like myself, San Francisco is 40 minutes away.

Tomas Hertl and I went to San Francisco during training camp this year. We went to Fisherman's Wharf, Pier 39, the trolley cars, we went to Lombard Street and did Union Square. Hertl knows all the tourist stuff there from having friends and family from Europe coming into town. I haven't spent the summer here in San Jose yet, but I would love to spend even more time here and get used to the area and explore even more stuff. It's a great area.

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