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PLAYER JOURNAL: MATTIAS NORSTROM

Tuesday, 10.18.2005 / 10:19 AM / Los Angeles Kings | News
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PLAYER JOURNAL: MATTIAS NORSTROM
Each Tuesday during the month of October, Kings defenseman Mattias Norstrom will post his journal of thoughts on the weeks upcoming and past events. Be sure to check out each entry.

Mattias Norstrom Journal Entry Three | Read Entry Two | Read Entry One
Oct. 18, 2005

I think the team is coming together well, but I also think we collectively need to realize that it's still early in the year, and we still have plenty to learn.

We have a great combination of young guys and veteran players, but I think our recent game against the Detroit Red Wings shows that we still have some things to work on. In that game (October 13 at STAPLES Center), we played well enough to win but we didn't.

I've have to give a lot of credit to the Red Wings, a veteran team that continues to find ways to win. I think that's so important, especially for young guys to see. They need to play in games like that to grow as players, and games like that also bring a team closer together.

I don't think as a player you can ever say this is where I should be or that is what I should be doing. That's a coaching decision. The coaches decide who should be on the ice and who should be their big-minute players. Looking back at my career, I've normally been around the 20-minute mark for games. The competitive side of me wants to be out there on the ice as much as possible. The day that it doesn't matter if I play 20 minutes or 10 minutes is the day that I hang them up.

My road game routine has changed throughout my career. These days, I try to spend as little time in my hotel room as possible. After a lot of years on the road and in hotels, that's not the most attractive part of being on a road trip.

Maybe it's an age thing as well, but it doesn't benefit me to stay in my room resting. I don't necessarily go sight seeing, but I do make a point to go for a walk in the city that I'm staying in.

I do look forward to going to dinner with my teammates the night before a road game. The routine includes dinner, a good night's sleep, breakfast with teammates and then a trip to the rink for meetings and a morning skate. Next we leave the rink and head back to the hotel for our pre-game meal.

After lunch, I usually take a short nap. Before you know it, it's time to get on the bus and head back to the rink for the game that night.