Today's spotlight player is Petr Mainer from the Fresno Monsters. Petr came to Fresno from the Czech Republic; he played with HC Plsen where he was team captain. As a Monster Petr put up 6 goals and 10 assists. Petr is a great guy who is in America to live his dream, play at the professional level, and with the skills he has I can see that in the near future. I caught up with Petr to ask him a few questions.
DG: What are you doing on your off season?
PM: I relaxed for a few days and then I started preparing for the next season. Summer workout, practicing, running and stuff like that.
DG: Where did you play before Fresno and what was the difference in the level of play?
PM: I have played in Pilsen. It's the highest junior league in the Czech Republic. I was a captain for our team. Difference is that in Europe is biggest rink, more technically without playing physically and attitude as well.
DG: What is your favorite thing about playing in Fresno?
PM: It's a good rink with great fans. I have never played before a lot of fans like I did in Fresno. Good atmosphere.
DG: How has the community reacted to you being on the team?
PM: It was different than Czech....I couldn't speak English and it was a hard 3 months for me. But my teammates and coaches were great. Everybody helped me with anything, and my billet family was absolutely the best.
DG: What is your favorite activity besides hockey?
PM: I like every kind of sport. Like soccer, tennis and stuff like that. In my free time I spend a lot of time with my family and friends. Hang out, go to the cinema.
DG: Why did you choose Fresno over all the other teams in the league?
PM: I have been on tryout in USHL but they had a full roster so I had to leave and the coach from Fresno wanted me for a try out. I didn't hesitate and went for it. After 2 practices coach said that he wants me on the team. I liked my teammates and I said I'm in.
DG: What is it like playing so far away from home?
PM: It was pretty hard for me. New place, new style of hockey, couldn't speak English. I had to work hard and did the best. My billet family helped me a lot.
DG: What are your post junior goals?
PM: Like I want to be better, new experience, try something new. I've always wanted play in USA.
DG: Are you planning on playing at the college level?
PM: I planned that, but I haven't done school in Czech, so I can't go for College hockey.
DG: What are your thoughts on the upcoming season?
PM: I want play at the pro level. It doesn't matter if it's in USA or Europe. So I'm doing everything for that, Like preparing in the summer for some tryouts and going.