Amateur or Professional? Always our choice!
We finally returned home!
Jenn and I have been so busy training Companies and Organizations across North America these past years that we have not attended a Montreal Canadiens game for a long time. It was so much fun to finally get there with our friends Wayne and Aleesha. My old buddy and teammate, Réjean Houle, welcomed us to the Alumni Suite, Guy Lapointe shook hands with us, and another number 11 (just before me), Yvon Lambert, took a photo with us.
It was already lots of fun and I was just getting going. Later I had the chance to spend time with my Captain, Bob Gainey, and guess who popped in before the game started? My old friend and right winger, Guy Lafleur (This would be name-dropping if these guys weren't my old teammates).
All of these players were amazing pros and awesome people. My relationship with Guy, in particular, was not only fun, but incredibly instructive. During my early years with the Canadiens I played on a line with “Flower” and Doug Wickenheiser. Guy and Lise lived close to us, so Guy would pick me up for practice once in a while, and in those early seasons, he was my roommate on the road.
I learned so much from Guy! He never took me aside and said, “Here kid, sit down and listen up. I want you to learn this, do more of this, and be more of that!” Guy didn’t give me any advice; he just did it and let me watch. Guy didn’t tell me… he showed me.
To learn this way, the learner has to pay attention and really focus; you have to dig the gold with your own shovel. Here are the 3 Key lessons I learned as I watched one of the greatest professional hockey players of all time:
1- Turn HAVE-TOs into WANT-TOs
Guy’s signature drive wide with speed, ending with an outside slap-shot, short-side over the goalie’s shoulder, brought every fan (in the building and watching at home) to their feet. Fans, however, usually only see the end outcomes. I watched the process that Guy used to deliver those results. It looked to me like practice! Guy would show up early to every