by Patrick Hoffman on 05/14/09 at 07:30 PM ET
As most knowledgeable hockey fans known, The Hockey News has a great team of writers that provides invaluable content on a daily basis.
I was lucky enough to catch up with one of them, Adam Proteau, via e-mail to do an e-mail interview with him to talk about how he got into the game, the industry, The Hockey News, and his thoughts on the playoffs.
PH: How did you first get into hockey?
AP: Hockey was all around me when I was a kid. I played starting at age six, my dad was a beer league goalie, and my grandmother worked at the CCM factory in Northwest Toronto. And of course, the Leafs were front and center in the 29-channel universe I grew up watching. The Rocky Saganiuk/Jiri Crha/Gary Nylund Leafs. Yes, it’s okay to feel sorry for me.
PH: Growing up, who was your favorite team and player? Why?
AP: I was a homer back then, so it was the Leafs. Don’t know that I had an absolute favorite player; Darryl Sittler, John Anderson and Rick Vaive were about as close as it gets.
PH: At what point in your life did you know that you wanted to get involved in hockey as a writer?
AP: Probably not until I went back to journalism school at age 26 (after studying criminology and film at the University of Toronto, attending a Manhattan-area drama school, and failing spectacularly as an actor). Once I realized I got more compliments for my writing than anything else I did, it finally clicked – and once I got on the journalism path, sports writing was a natural fit.
PH: Prior to joining The Hockey News, what other outlets did you cover hockey for?
AP: I covered the NHL, as well as the NBA’s Raptors and MLB’s Blue Jays, for a couple Toronto radio stations.
PH: Describe your gig at The Hockey News for us.
AP: I’m a columnist/writer for THN, so cranking out copy is the meat and potatoes of my day-to-day duties. But I also co-host THN Radio (with my good friend Mike Ross) on XM Home Ice Channel 204, promote the brand with other radio and TV appearances, and edit when the higher-ups need me to.
PH: What are you trying to bring hockey fans that read your work?
AP: My goals as a columnist are to bring an original perspective and/or insight to current events, stoke and provoke debate, and to elicit passionate responses from readers.
PH: Now for some actual hockey talk: What are your thoughts on this year’s playoffs - surprises, disappointments, etc.?
AP: I’m sure I’m in the majority when I say this year’s post-season has been one of the best in recent memory – and without a doubt the most entertaining playoffs I’ve covered professionally. Obviously the Sharks were a huge disappointment, but I don’t think it’s fair to call the Ducks a surprise, as they were one of the most feared teams in the minds of most NHL employees I spoke with prior to the start of the tournament. If any team that’s still playing has been a real surprise, it’s been Carolina.
PH: Look into your crystal ball: Who is going to win the Stanley Cup this year? Why?
AP: There’s nothing to suggest the Red Wings shouldn’t still be the favorite. Sure, they could lose to the Ducks in Game 7, but if they don’t, I don’t think there’s a remaining active team, especially the Blackhawks, that can match their defensive intensity.
PH: Any words of wisdom for Kukla’s Korner readers out there?
AP: Not particularly. Paul runs a fantastic site and does a great service for his readers, and I hope they appreciate the hard work he and the rest of his bloggers put in for them.
Be sure to check out Adam’s great work here.
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Patrick has a tremendous passion for hockey. Besides covering the Rangers and the NHL for Kukla's Korner, you can also find Patrick's work over at Sportsnet.ca, The Red Light District Hockey Blog, NHL Home Ice, and Liam Maguire's Ultimate Hockey web site.
Prior to writing for the above mentioned outlets, you could find Patrick's musings at hockey web sites/outlets such as TheHockeyNews.com, TheFourthPeriod.com, Spector's Hockey, Hokeja Vestnesis, Blueshirt Bulletin, SNYRangersBlog.com and many more.
For questions, comments and hip checks, feel free to e-mail Patrick at email@example.com.