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12-03-2012, 12:45 AM
  #114
Big Phil
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Amazing Ralph View Post
By pond you mean ice time in general right? Because I think the days of old where you saw players become stars by hitting the outdoor rink are over...the stars now come from the AAA clubs where they hit up the rink 5 times a week.
Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty10 View Post
I was going to post this. Ponds are historic and fun ways to play with friends, but there is not one player who can attribute his success to having played on a pond. Sure, some kids may learn some things from their dad on a pond, but all of these guys have played high level hockey 4+ days a week since they were kids. Practice and training breeds stars not playing on a pond for fun.
I guess Walter Gretzky specifically making his backyard a rink for Wayne has no bearing on how he turned out? Honestly, Wayne spent hours upon hours out there having fun, going around pylons, shooting on the net, skating in circles. It made him what he ended up being in the NHL. When you can practice in the comfort of your own property anytime you want that is a huge plus. Someone else mentioned the Staals as an example. You think winters aren't cold in Thunder Bay? It goes further than that too. I've heard Frank Mahovlich talk about how his parents gave him blue and red ribbons that they melted onto the pond to form the lines that emulated hockey. Any all-time great - especially in Canada - would tell you the amount of time they played on the ponds in their free time. Lindros had a pond in his backyard too. Lafleur used to sleep in his hockey equipment just so he could get on the ice quicker. Dave Keon used to play with bigger boys on the pond and if he got checked then that was just part of growing up and getting better. I don't think you can ever underestimate a free pond at your disposal.

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