Kukla's Korner Hockey

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Maturity Will Improve Drew Doughty's Game

06/06/2014 at 8:34am EDT

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

For years, the Kings’ GM Dean Lombardi has compared Doughty’s development to that of the Hall of Famer Ray Bourque. They are two players who, in their draft years, were identified as both supremely talented and clueless about conditioning. Doughty’s nickname was Dough Boy, and Bourque was associated with too much doughnut consumption. Bourque eventually became a chiselled NHL specimen, and one of the great players of his era. But he didn’t win the first of his five Norris trophies until he was 26.

Doughty is fitter than he was, but he can still get better in that area of the game, according to Kings coach Sutter.

“I think when you do all the analytics on athletes, he’s a long ways from being as good as he’s going to be just because of his age,” Sutter said.

“You learn to manage your ice time better; you become a better shot selection guy; you become a better penalty killer. You learn the league better, you learn players on the other teams better, the nuances of star players. You learn how to handle your practice habits, nutrition, what you do on game days. All that stuff. As I say, there’s a big difference between being 25 and 35.”

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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