isn’t your typical 22-year-old.
The native of Montreal, Quebec is playing in his fourth year in the National Hockey League and lists future Hall-of-Famer Rob Blake as his defensive partner. “Pickles” has nearly 300 NHL games under his belt after only missing one game over the past four seasons. Not bad for a guy who ranks second on the team in average ice time per game (22:48).
There’s not a lot that Vlasic can’t do. Well, except maybe bake.
When SJSHARKS.com caught up with Vlasic for his segment of Ask the Sharks
, we asked him about playing alongside Blake, his nickname and whether or not he can cook. Some of his answers might surprise you.
Below are Vlasic’s answers to your best questions. 1.You’ve earned the nickname “Pickles” from the Sharks. If you had another nickname, what would it be and why? – Mark R.
Vlasic: (laughs) That’s a good one. But if I had to pick one…just Vlas; short for Vlasic. 2.If you could be another one of your team mates for a day or game, who would you be? – Amanda
Vlasic: For a game, Patrick Marleau
and I would score some goals. And for a day, Dan Boyle
and not have to practice (laughs). 3.What is it like to be paired with such an experienced veteran like Rob Blake on defense and how does that help your development? – Ryan
Vlasic: Its been great the last two years, playing with a guy with a lot of experience who’s won two Stanley cups. He’s been around a long time and in many situations and I think that’s helped me be more relaxed out there and put all trust in my partner. Most of the time I just learn by watching what he does.4.All the guys on the team seem to be really good friends. Who would you consider to be your closest friend on the team? – Laurel
Vlasic: I don’t really have one…but Jason Demers
. I trained with him in the off-season so I’d have to say him. And Torrey Mitchell
too. I’m roommates with him on the road.
5. What's your favorite TV show? – Lisa R.
Vlasic: 24.6.Do you know how to cook? – Lisa R.
Vlasic: I do, yes, but just basic things. Like spaghetti, steaks, nothing where you have mix stuff together, just basic stuff…no baking, just steaks, pasta and vegetables.7.What do you like to do in the offseason? – Emily
Vlasic: I like to play golf and I have a pool in my yard so I like to play in the pool with my dogs, and my brothers come over once in awhile and we train and play hockey.8.What part of playing defense do you enjoy the most? – Marge
Vlasic: The best part is stopping the offensive game. Well stick-wise, I have a good stick but that’s not my favorite thing. My favorite thing about defense is stopping the best power play. 9.What do you think is the biggest difference between this year’s team and last years? – Octavio
Vlasic: The biggest thing I think is that we have more speed. I think we have more talent up front and I think we want it more this year. That’s what it looks like.
10.You’ve been in the NHL four years. As a 22 year old, how has the game changed since your rookie year? – Chris D.
Vlasic: I don’t think it’s changed that much. I think there are a lot younger players making it now so there are a lot of new faces. I think there’s a lot more speed. There’s nothing dramatic that’s changed, I’d just say a lot of young guys and a lot more speed.