"On the Fly" is a new regular feature on DallasStars.com. Senior digital correspondent Scott Burnside sits down with a member of the Stars for a few random, off-the-cuff questions to gain insight into their lives, thoughts and careers on and off the ice.
Today's edition features veteran defenseman Marc Methot, who spent his career with Columbus Blue Jackets and Ottawa Senators before coming to Dallas last offseason in a post-expansion draft trade from the Vegas Golden Knights.
Previous installments: Jason Spezza | Jamie Benn | Stephen Johns | Kari Lehtonen | Tyler Pitlick
Scott Burnside: What was the best hockey purchase you remember growing up?
Marc Methot: It's funny. It's kind of off the map, but for me, I remember doing this huge project on Ray Bourque when I was in Grade 5, I think. I sent it off to him to get it signed -- it was a big, long page of stuff. I went to a French school and I had a bunch of printed out pictures and stuff, too, from the Boston Bruins. He was my favorite player growing up and I never got anything back from him. Now, maybe that was my fault. I don't know if I had anything pre-posted back in the envelope, so that could be why. But that stands out to me. I still am a huge fan of his game, but man, if only I could meet him one day and have something signed from him or a signed jersey, I would be very appreciative.
Video: Pang discusses Marc Methot's return to the lineup
SB: Do you remember the first time you were ever asked for an autograph or interviewed?
MM: I never had opportunities like that, just because I wasn't a highly-touted prospect as a kid. I was a sixth-round pick in the OHL draft, and I was a six-rounder in the NHL draft. I always had something to prove and I never really had those puff pieces written about me as a player. It became more of a reality, or at least the opportunity became attainable, when I was playing junior. Once I started playing junior hockey, and you started seeing guys getting drafted around you, I remember thinking, 'Well, that guy got drafted in the third or second round, and I know I'm better than him.' That's when I started to realize that reaching for those goals wasn't impossible, and that would be the more significant area. It was probably my three years playing junior hockey. I felt that way early on, but especially in my last year of junior hockey. I was playing for the London Knights. We won the Memorial Cup that year and I was playing against Sidney Crosby. ... I had a couple of really good games against them and I remember thinking then that, okay, if I can play with the best guys in the world at this age group, I can do it.
SB: You played against Crosby and Pittsburgh in the conference finals last year. Was there ever a moment between you?
MM: No. God, no. He's had so many moments that any moment I would have had with him is completely insignificant, and I get it. I would never even bring that up, but I'm glad that we won that tournament. So, that's one thing I have.
SB: If you could go back and talk to 18-year-old Marc Methot, what advice would you give him?
MM: I would tell him to relax a little bit more. I was very uptight and nervous and stressed all the time. I was hard on myself. Maybe that was a strength of mine, I don't know. Had I relaxed more, maybe I wouldn't have gone down the same path. But I took things very seriously, and I think I didn't leave myself enough time to maybe a relax a little bit more and enjoy the moment. But it's what's made me the player that I am now and I'm proud of that.
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SB: When you signed your first contract, did you reward yourself with a purchase?
MM: No. I remember -- this goes for most players, I think -- I got my signing bonus, whatever it was there at the time, when I signed that first deal just coming out of junior, and I remember getting that first paycheck in the mail and thinking, 'Oh, my god, where did it all go?' I wasn't aware of the whole tax thing. You know you get taxed, but you don't realize that 50 percent is gone, and so, I remember getting the check and calling my agent right away and going, 'What's happening here?' It was crazy. I still remember where I was when I made that phone call and opened it. I was at my old house where I grew up. That was a very significant moment. I was always very stingy, especially early on with my money. I didn't go blowing it on a big car. I think the first vehicle that I bought was a Chevy Trailblazer that was when I was playing in Syracuse, my first year pro. But I didn't buy it prior (to the season). Going in there, I had my parents' old minivan -- it was a Toyota Previa. It looked like a spaceship, and I remember guys were laughing at me and then it wouldn't start a lot, and that was in Syracuse. But I'm grateful my parents lent me that until I bought the Trailblazer.
This story was not subject to approval of the National Hockey League or Dallas Stars Hockey Club.
Scott Burnside is a senior digital correspondent for DallasStars.com. You can follow him on Twitter @OvertimeScottB, and listen to his podcast.
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