Gregg Sutch put up eight points in 43 games with Mississauga this season. (Photo by Aaron Bell/OHL Images)
Another season down, another off-season to train and prepare, another season to look forward to.
In the midst of all the hockey madness, it's important to thank the people around you who have helped along the way to get you to where you are. A career in hockey is not an easy one to pursue, but if it were, everybody would be doing this. Along the journey, you always need help and support from others. After the season I've had with countless injuries and an almost impossible fight against luck, the support was seemingly never-ending throughout the year from a wide range of people.
It all starts within my own family, my father, Keith, and my mother, Kim, as well as my older sister, Tanya. They provided all the support and strength that helped me push through this season, with it all ending on a good note, despite losing in five games to the Barrie Colts. On top of family, there's my billet family, the Harterys, who provided the support and energy each day to keep me going. After that, there are individuals who have helped throughout the season such as my agent, Murray Kuntz, the boys back home in Newmarket, my own teammates and coaching staff, as well as my athletic therapist, Ivan Bokanovic, for the countless treatments he has done for me this year to help me recover from each injury throughout the season. I also thank Ryan Kennedy, writer and copy editor for THN, for this opportunity to share my feelings and thoughts around the hockey world and to provide insight for our fans.
It's important to remember the little people who help you get to where you are because they're the ones who make the biggest difference at the end of the day.
Coming up next is the NHL draft, hosted in Los Angeles. This is an exciting, yet anxious, time for myself because there are so many questions that surround the draft. This is the first step in having the rare opportunity to play with or against the best in the world such as Sidney Crosby, Alex Ovechkin and Drew Doughty. You ask yourself questions such as, "Will I get drafted?” “Where will I get drafted?” “What round?” “What will happen after?"
Although it may be challenging to take your mind off the draft, not get caught up in the rankings, the mock drafts and the phone calls, it is best to stay calm through the whole situation and soak it all in. It's an experience so many young players around the hockey world wish to have. It's an event you'll always remember and it's a season you'll always remember – even if it’s more or less a forgettable one. I wish the best of luck to all my draft-eligible buddies; soak it all in boys.
Here's to another season gone by and to another training season coming up. Take the time to thank the people around you and it's off to work this summer. Cheers.
Right winger Gregg Sutch is in his second year in the Ontario League after having been traded over the summer to Mississauga from Sarnia. The 17-year-old native of Newmarket, Ont., is highly touted for the 2010 NHL draft. He will blog throughout the season for THN.com. Read Sutch's other blogs HERE.