One-on-one: Plekanec basks in the spotlight

Tomas Plekanec wears a turtleneck under his jersey, but he’s no slowpoke.
BRUCE BENNETT, GETTY IMAGES

In today’s one-on-one, The Gazette’s Kevin Mio sits down with Canadiens forward Tomas Plekanec, who has settled into his role as Alex Kovalev’s centre and proven he is up to the task after a shaky start last season. The Czech forward exploded offensively during the second half of last season, finishing with 20 goals, and that has carried over into this season. Through 35 games, he has 11 goals and 16 assists.

In this week’s feature, he discusses topics such as why he wears a turtleneck under his equipment and how he has adjusted to playing with Kovalev.

Here’s a sample of his answers:

You spent three seasons in Hamilton, which is a long time for some players. Looking back, do you think that was a good thing for you in the long run?

"For sure. When you’re a young guy, you don’t
really like it down in the minors, but if you go about it and think it’s good for you, it’s going to help you for sure. It helped me a lot. When I look back, I think it’s a great thing for me to have played there."

Who was your idol growing up?

"It was Jaromir Jagr all the time because he is from the same city (Kladno, Czech Republic) and he was the closest star to look at."

Read the entire article here. 

10 Comments

  1. gumper says:

    Kudos to Plekanec as he quietly goes about his job night after night. He, more than anyone else on the team, serves as a role model to the “younger” players of how to do your job. Let your work ethic do the talking. I see a solid core of players like this forming in Montreal. Plekanec,, Chipchura, Price, Komisarek, Higgins, Lapierre, and lately, Latendresse, and S. Kostitsyn. (Jury’s still out on A. Kostitsyn as far as I can see, as he brings it when he feels like it.) With players like this we will form a team for the future. Last night’s game showed two things, in my opinion. First, we can win with these players if everybody contributes. ( And, yes, Huet did contribute. We know he’s weak in the shootout, but you don’t dump (or dump on) a goalie for that reason. He played a solid game.) The second thing is, we desperately need a finisher, and it looks like we need to acquire one either through free agency or a trade. Trade seems to be the only sensible route, as we can’t convince anyone to come to Montreal otherwise. I think Bob should be considering packaging A. Kostitsyn, Huet, Ryder and draft picks for a power forward who can finish. Kostitsyn would be the sleeper in the deal. By that I mean, there are people out there who think he will develop into a first line forward eventually. Personally, I’m not one of those, as I do not believe he has the mental toughness. This would free up about 7 million, which is about what would be needed to pick up someone who can put the puck in the net. I know it leaves us vulnerable in net, but we’re losing Huet next year anyway, guaranteed, so deal him now and get some value.

  2. 24 Cups says:

    Andrei has spent most of the year on the top line with Pleks and Kovalev and he still isn’t able to play at the next level. I know he’s still quite young but this guy’s on the clock as far as I’m concerned. He’s really fallen behind the other players in his draft year. As for Pleks, I’m very impressed with the fact that his faceoff ability has realy picked up over the past few weeks. That was his only true weakness. I’d still take him over Ribeiro any day of the week.

    The Original 24 Cups

  3. ColRouléBleu says:

    No Pleky, no one else on the team wears the turtleneck during games, only during warmup ha!ha!

    That player never ceases to amaze me, he shows improvement game after game and I fully agree with the previous post “With players like this we will form a team for the future.”

  4. Ian Cobb says:

    Good Morning KEVIN! It is great to see a full picture of Plek to day. On Dave,s page we only get the very top of the pictures. We don’t know what they are.

    A week or more ago your teck guy did something and we got his pic. for two days, but now we don’t.

    Like this morning we get yours but not Dave’s.
    Someone told me to download Firefox from Google, which i did but i don’t know how to use it.

    Anyway i thought i would let you know.

    IAN

  5. Kevin Mio says:

    Ian,

    I had the same problem when viewing the page in Internet Explorer. I switched to Firefox when we switched to the new site and that has fixed the problem. If you can get the installed and working properly, you shouldn’t have any other problems viewing the website.

    Hope that helps.

    Kevin

  6. Naila Jinnah says:

    I like TurlePleks more than Captain Turtleneck, but that’s just a personal preference :P

    Thanks for asking the question!! :D

  7. Sulemaan says:

    One thing that cannot be underestimated is the value of young players being brought up slowly through the farm team. It allows them to learn and not get crucified by the rabid media and fans in Montreal every time they make a mistake. That is why I’m glad Carey Price played in the AHL playoffs last year and other guys like Plekanec, Komisarek, Higgins, Kostitsyn brothers, O’Byrne all played in the AHL. Something to remember for the the future when we acquire or draft young players that we don’t rush them into the NHL.

  8. Smart Dog says:

    Great player, game-in, game-out. Solid, strong on the puck, driven. I like that he’s the first one at the rink – and that he loves playing the Leafs. You can tell he’s a real competitor. He and A Kostitsyn had some great chemistry back in October… hope that comes back.

    ________________________________________________________________
    Be happy! At least the FUTURE looks bright!
    Plekanec, Higgins, Komi, Chips, Lapierre, O’Byrne, K1 &K2, Price

  9. Ian Cobb says:

    Kevin, I have down loaded firefox from google on to my computer, i just don,t know what to do now with it. Being a tecky nerd and all at 64, i,m not sure what gear i’m in!!

  10. Sulemaan says:

    Don’t disagree with you at all Guy. I agree we must go with youth but we should never rush kids from junior/college straight into the NHL unless they are an exception. Let them spend one or two years on the farm. Call them up when we have injuries or need an injection of youth. Exactly what the club is doing right now.

    I’ve just seen too many teams in the past thrust a young kid into the lineup and burned their confidence forever. Just like farming, you nurture your crops and let them grow strong over time.

    FYI: It’s funny you called me Sully because that’s what my old friends in sports used to call me.


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