Marner discusses playing with Tavares, taking on more of a leadership role (TSN)
At his Marner Assist Fund event, Mitch Marner discusses potentially playing on John Tavares’ wing, taking on more of a leadership role in the room, and more.
On the addition of Tavares:
It’s amazing to hear that he wanted to come to our team. It’s very exciting for our team. We’re young, so a player of his calibre to choose us over any other [team] is incredible. We’re all excited to have him on our team. It adds a lot of depth to our centermen that are already very deep. Regardless of what line you play on, you have the potential to be successful.
On the captaincy:
The older guys in the room all lead by example, and the young guys are just trying to learn from that and trying to get better. The captain’s role is not a players’ debate. The coach and the GM will make that decision, but player wise, I don’t think it matters who has the letter on their jersey. We are all going to be leaders in different ways, and that’s the good thing about our team.
On taking on more of a leadership role himself:
I want to be kind of taken more seriously, I guess you could say. I obviously love the jokes about getting called a five and six year old. I find it very amusing and funny. But I obviously want to get taken a little bit more seriously now in the room and I’m taking it more upon myself. I think all young guys do. We want to put more pressure on ourselves to be better every single night. Going forward, that’s what we’re going to have to do.
On the status of a potential contract extension:
I’m just kind of staying out of it and letting Kyle and my agent talk about it. I’m just focused on trying to get stronger and faster this summer time. If something comes along, something comes along. I’m not focused on it too much. Just leave it to those two to talk. If something gets done, something gets done. If not, it’s another hockey season to go in and work. I want to play for this team for a long time. In saying that, I just let those two talk and I stay in the background and keep working.
On potentially playing on John Tavares’ wing, like Babcock has hinted:
He’s a high skill talent. Regardless of who you play with on his team now – and the years before… the past two years, our four lines have been very deep, I think. Regardless of what line you play on, you can still put points up. I’m just more focusing on making sure I’m playing smarter with the puck this year and that when opportunities come, I’m shooting a little more. At the end of the year, I kind of got more into a shooting role. I know that JT is very good at making plays and hitting people when they’re open.