NEW GLASGOW – Brett Doiron is learning on the fly this season with Weeks Crushers as one of their new defencemen.
© CHRISTOPHER CAMERON - THE NEWS
Brett Doiron poses by his stall in the Pictou County Weeks Crushers locker room. Doiron joined the Crushers this season after two seasons playing with the boys hockey team at Rothesay Netherwood School.
Having spent the last two seasons with the Rothesay Netherwood School in New Brunswick, he’s the first to admit it’s been an adjustment moving into the junior ranks and that he hasn’t been perfect thus far.
“Just being quick with my decisions,” he said. “Back when I was playing for the school I could hang onto the puck a little longer, but now it’s more of a get the puck and know where to give it right away, which has been a little bit of a struggling point for me. I’ve been working on that every day in practice and focusing on that in games to get the puck to the first guy open as soon as he’s there.”
Joining a veteran Crushers roster, the St. Anne’s, P.E.I., native said adjusting to the team and living in New Glasgow has been smooth so far. He was approached by Pictou County head coach Jason Malone last April about coming to play with the Crushers. Knowing Malone and his coaching style and what kind of team they had helped make the decision to come here an easy one.
Thus far it’s been a different experience for him both on and off the ice.
“The speed has been the biggest difference, just playing guys that are a lot older and everything is a step up from what I’m used to,” he said. “Living on my own outside of the rink is a little different as well because I’m used to living with 50 guys year-round, but it’s just something you need to get used to. I’m always up for a challenge and it’s always good to start doing things for yourself and you grow up a bit, I guess, when you hit the junior leagues, which is another process with hockey and growing up in general.”
The 17-year-old said he grew up learning how to skate and that most of his family played the game, but it wasn’t until a family friend got him in it that he really started to get involved. He said at first he didn’t like it, but as he played the game more and more his love for hockey grew. Now he couldn’t think of doing anything else.
Over the years he also developed some superstitions, but nothing too crazy. Doiron has a specific way he puts on his gear and likes to use new tape each game.
“I put my gear on left to right then go back the other way to finish it off,” he said. “So on the bottom I’ll go left to right and then finish right to left up top. It’s just a habit I guess. I always need to have a fresh tape job before games as well. Other than that it’s just mental preparation before each game.”
Tonight Doiron and the Weeks Crushers host the Miramichi Timberwolves at 7 p.m. at the Pictou County Wellness Centre. In their last meeting the Crushers won 5-4 in Miramichi. The game was also their third game in three nights. Doiron said playing them with fresh legs would only make a minor difference in tonight’s game.
“I think it will,” he said. “We’ve been off for a few days now, so we’re still going to need a good practice tonight (Wednesday) before we go into tomorrow. They’re a good team, so they’re going to be coming in strong as well. It’s not going to be much easier (with fresh legs), but I think it will be a little easier on our bodies going into it and we’ll be a little more mentally fresh. Hopefully we’ll make a few less mistakes because of that.”
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