Tuomo Ruutu was drafted ninth overall in 2001. (Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images)
How do you improve your wrist shot so that it is accurate and powerful?
- Eric Post, Arnprior, Ont.
I think it's all about shooting a lot – that's probably the first thing to do. Every time you shoot, you have to try to score. I'm probably not the best guy to say that, but that's what the goal-scorers do. It doesn't matter if it's a scrimmage, a practice or a game, they always try to score. I think that's the most important thing.
What's it like having your brother in the league and how intense does the rivalry get when you play against each other?
- Glen Cuthbert, Hamilton, Ont.
It's cool and it's something special, but at the same time, I don't know if I like playing against him. You want him to do well, but at the same time you want your team to win.
Mr. Ruutu, what team do you think has the best chance of winning the Cup this year; other than your team, the Hurricanes?
- Zac Matthews, Jordan Station, Ont.
The last couple of years it has been so hard to predict, but obviously Detroit would have to be my pick. They won the championship last year and they have a really good team.
So far, what has been the highlight of your career?
- Connor Shirtliff, Starbuck, Man.
I haven't really won anything big, so I don't really have one special moment. It almost feels like (a special moment) all the time. You wake up every morning and you realize you're playing hockey and traveling and you have good friends with you all the time. It's unbelievable.
What has been the biggest change from playing professional hockey in Finland (against your country’s best players) to playing in the NHL (against the world's best players)?
- Fernando Manuel Colon, Orlando, Fla.
It's still hockey and if you're a good player back home, you're going to be a good player in the NHL. But back home when you get the puck, you can actually look up ice for a pass, but here you almost have to know before you get the puck what you're going to do with it. Guys are more skilled and stronger.
What was your favorite team growing up?
- Ryan Tretick, Prince George, B.C.
Calgary and Pittsburgh. It was Pittsburgh because of Lemieux, obviously. Back home we never saw too many hockey games; it was more like hockey cards.
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