The heavy workload is just fine with Drew Doughty, who logged a season-high 27 minutes, 5 seconds. I asked him about the increased workload and about his transition to the NHL. As a side note, it’s often easy to forget that Doughty is 18 years old, but sometimes it comes through. While I was talking to Doughty, he had his eyes clearly fixed on the ping-pong table, anticipating the upcoming big doubles match. I felt bad for him, so I stopped asking questions. As I left, Brian Boyle and Patrick O’Sullivan were getting the better of Anze Kopitar and Kyle Quincey. Anyway, back to Doughty…
Question: I take it you don’t mind playing 27 minutes a night…
DOUGHTY: “For sure. Believe it or not, I really wasn’t even that tired. A lot of the shifts were power play and stuff like that, so it was great to play that many minutes. I enjoy a lot of minutes, and I feel I play better when I get a lot, so it was great and hopefully I can do it a couple more times.”
Question: The physical conditioning, and getting in better shape the way you did this summer, how much does that help?
DOUGHTY: “It helps out a ton, just because I’m in such better shape than I was before. My cardio is up, and just in general I can skate faster with less effort. It’s so much easier, just because of the weight loss.”
Question: Are there things that get progressively easier for you with the more games you play?
DOUGHTY: “It’s definitely become a lot easier. The first couple games were a learning experience, and pretty tough for me, but after that I got more ice time and played in more games and got a lot more comfortable.”