Summers for NHL players contain a few main ingredients: time with friends and family, added attention to a hobby and most important of all—rest.
After an 82-game season (not including the playoffs), there’s little worry about striving for originality from hockey’s finest. They just want a chance to refresh and prepare for a new campaign that’s already just two to three months away.
Nashville Predators forward Colin Wilson got the memo; he just didn’t finish reading it.
“I was situated in Boston, but during that time I also went to Toronto, Winnipeg, Montreal, Newport, New Hampshire and Cape Cod. I was kind of all over the East Coast,” Wilson said. “It was a little bit of a special summer with all the travel.”
For the Winnipeg native born in Greenwich, Connecticut, most of the travel had a specific purpose, however.
“Going home to Winnipeg is always at the top on my list for the offseason,” said Wilson. “I always go back home there, and I went to Toronto for training.”
After shoulder-stabilization surgery the previous offseason, the 24-year-old forward acknowledged he wanted to spend more time gaining strength this summer.
“I normally do a three-week break, but this year I did two since I had the [shoulder] surgeries the year before. I started my workouts a little sooner, since I couldn’t ramp up like I wanted to the last summer,” Wilson said. “I don’t feel any kind of holdback from the surgeries anymore. I felt pretty good last season, but I just wasn’t as strong as I’d like to be, so it was important to get my strength back.”
The 2013-14 season didn’t bring the results offensively for Wilson that he or the Predators hoped for, and this summer, the forward focused on adding core and upper-body muscle to enhance his game. But the former first-round pick didn’t stop there. He’s also recently picked up another helpful attribute that could aid him on the ice this fall.
“Well, I have a lot more patience now that I’m getting older. So I’m finally getting into fishing,” Wilson said.
Count this summer as one seized by the young Nashville forward. After all, added strength and patience on the ice should help Wilson with fishing of a different kind.
Muscle your way into the high slot. Wait for a pass. Light the lamp.
You may just get a catfish. It’s worked before.