The summers can sometimes fly by for all National Hockey League players. The Sharks are no exception.
After taking a little time off following the postseason, they resume workouts and return to their teams for captain’s practices which begin in August. A prime example is defenseman Dan Boyle
, who just returned to the Bay Area.
Boyle may have taken some time off, but his summer was a busy one. Before he returned this week to Sharks Ice for off-ice workouts, Boyle went to his wife’s hometown of Tampa. That was followed by a trip to his hometown of Ottawa. And in between going to Tampa and Ottawa, he made a brief trip to Edmonton.
That trip to Edmonton was special because that’s when Boyle was reunited with all but two of his Canadian Olympic squad teammates. The purpose of the reunion was for everyone to receive rings for winning the gold medal.
The reunion, although brief, was nice considering how little time the group had to cherish their victory in Vancouver.
“We won (in Vancovuer), then hung out that night a couple hours in the locker room, then we had a family get-together,” Boyle said. “People got with their families after then pretty much everybody was flying out. So that was it.”
The reunion allowed for everyone to be together in a less pressure packed scenario.
“Everybody was loose,” Boyle said. “It was nice to hang out with the guys and not talk hockey so much. Everybody came and went pretty quickly. We flew in and everybody flew out the next day so it happened pretty quickly.”
Boyle can’t wear his gold medal everywhere, but he can wear the ring.
“They came out great. I think they did a great job,” Boyle said. “It’s not something I’d wear every day. They’re pretty shiny and pretty big. But they did a great job to make sure the Leaf was on it on the front and obviously our names and numbers on there.”
However, don’t expect to see Boyle wearing the Olympic gold medal ring when he’s at the grocery store.
“They’re for certain special occasions,” he said. “They’re made to be special because they represent a special memory.”
“I think I’ve worn my Stanley Cup ring maybe five times,” Boyle said. “So we’re talking maybe once a year.”
While Boyle had a busy summer, he made sure he had plenty of down time to spend with his family and his daughter.
“Obviously with a kid now, she’s a year-and a-half now, every parent will tell you, things change,” Boyle said. “She’s certainly become the focus and it’s pretty much been down time all summer for me. I didn’t really leave the condo when we were in Florida. (I would) maybe go to the pool or beach with her (daughter), otherwise, it was pretty low-key. In Ottawa, we just spent time with family and friends, like grandma, as much as possible. But yeah, pretty low all summer, nothing too crazy.”
Well, almost all summer…
“I went to New York for a weekend, saw my favorite band, Faith No More,” Boyle said. “They played an outdoor venue and it was awesome.”
The story of how Boyle got to see his band is a “story within itself.”
“They’re a Bay Area band that I met a couple days before the playoffs,” he said. “They’re basically my favorite band. They’ve been broken up for 14 years and just got back together for a summer tour and were playing a gig in San Francisco a couple days before the Colorado series. To make a long story short, Tom Holy (Sharks media relations manager) got a hold of their manager and they pretty much set me up backstage. I met everybody and since have become good friends with a couple of guys.
“I got them down to a couple (playoff) games,” Boyle added. “They came and saw one Colorado game and I think they saw one Chicago game. The lead singer was supposed to sing the national anthem at one of the Chicago games, but something came up at the last minute with him. But he told me he’s gonna do one next year.
“I’ve met Metallica and a bunch of bands and I don’t get star struck ever but when I met, especially the lead singer and the drummer, I was a little star struck but [they’re] normal dudes, down to earth,” Boyle concluded. “And I made two new hockey fans.”
Besides seeing Faith No More, Boyle got to take his brother and wife for their first-ever trip to New York.
Boyle usually takes four weeks off after the season to rest the body. This year, his time off was just three weeks. But considering all he did, there’s no doubt he’s rejuvenated and ready to lead the Sharks to another long playoff run in 2010-11.