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Pavelski on the Golf Links - 8/29/2013

by Kelly Esrey / San Jose Sharks

Ask hockey fans to list the strengths of Sharks center Joe Pavelski and answers would flow predictably about the versatile athlete; clutch goal scorer, valuable play maker and consistent special teams performer, to list only a few.

While Pavelski’s versatility is a strength to which the hockey world can attest, friends and family of the 29-year-old know that the attribute extends well beyond the ice. A natural athlete, Pavelski spent humid Wisconsin summers away from the cool climate of the hockey rink, opting instead for the batting cage and golf course. At age eight he discovered that the hand-eye coordination which would turn him into an expert goal scorer also benefited him on the links. Soon after, weekly lessons on the public golf course transitioned into a passion for the game.

Pavelski honed his golf skills throughout childhood, eventually making the high school team. While his primary focus ultimately veered away from the green and onto the ice, Pavelski’s current profession hasn’t impeded him from entirely trading in his golf clubs for hockey sticks. Summers away from the hockey rink are not completely a thing of the past and Pavelski still rates golf’s individual play as “a nice change from the hockey season,” not to mention an amusing opportunity to “take all of ‘the Legend’s’ (teammate Adam Burish’s) money.”

The NHL off-season is a particularly rewarding occasion for the community-minded Pavelski, who utilizes a portion of his spare time to combine his love for the fairway with his enthusiasm to give back to his supporters. For the past five years, Pavelski has teed up for the “Joe Pavelski Charity Golf Tournament” in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. The always-sold out event benefits the Stevens Point Area Youth Hockey Association and Joe Pavelski Scholarship for Leaders.

Pavelski is also a popular staple at the annual Sharks Foundation Golf Classic. Held shortly before the commencement of training camp, the Sharks Foundation’s biggest fundraiser of the year features the full Sharks roster, coaching and broadcasting staff. In recent years, Pavelski’s talent has led to the creation of the “Beat the Shark” contest. In addition to the chance to golf alongside their favorite Sharks athletes, participants lucky enough to tee off closer to the pin then Pavelski on a specified hole receive autographed Sharks merchandise.

This year’s Golf Classic is scheduled for Monday, September 10 at Cinnabar Hills Golf Club. For the opportunity to observe Pavelski’s golf skills firsthand check out further information on the Sharks Foundation Golf Classic.

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