Oilers star Leon Draisaitl on keeping sharp in self-isolation: ‘I try to dangle around my dog once in a while’

first_img“I try to dangle around my dog once in a while with my stick — I have a stick in my basement,” Draisaitl said with a laugh. “But other than that there’s not much opportunity for me to work on my skills or anything like that.””I try to dangle around my dog once in a while.”Leon currently on a video chat with the #Oilers media contingent, asked how he’s keeping his hockey skills sharp during the @NHL season pause🐶🏒#HockeyAtHome | #LetsGoOilers pic.twitter.com/xiHBHG6ULe— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) March 30, 2020While the German-born star has been trying to keep it lighthearted as he waits out the pandemic in his Edmonton home, his thoughts are also with his family in his homeland. Draisaitl said that his loved ones in Germany are safe and following the instructions set by governments worldwide as COVID-19 continues its devastation.”My family is doing what they’re supposed to do, they’re staying in. So far everyone’s healthy. I hope that it stays that way, back home they’re doing what they’re supposed to do right now,” Draisaitl said, adding that he considered returning to Germany but decided against it. “It definitely crossed my mind, but I don’t think it makes much sense for me to go there right now, especially since it’s probably worse over there than it is here. So yeah, I thought about it, but I think I’m in a good place here right now.” But many sport-specific exercises have taken a back seat during the pandemic, or they’ve been heavily altered as even the most lavish houses cannot compete with the first-class training facilities that most top-tier athletes are used to accessing through their respective teams.Coronavirus and the NHL: Tracking how the pandemic has impacted hockey’s landscapeThis is the case for Leon Draisaitl, the Edmonton Oilers star who built up a 13-point lead atop the NHL scoring charts before the league was paused in an attempt to help halt the spread of the coronavirus. Draisaitl is a scoring machine who crossed the 100-point threshold for the second straight year despite the Oilers still having 11 unfinished games in the suspended season, and in addition to being the runaway leader in the race for the Art Ross Trophy, he’s also an odds-on favorite to win the Hart Trophy as the league’s most valuable player.Despite his excellent personal season and the success of the Oilers overall, Draisaitl says the right call was made to shut down all sports leagues and large gatherings in general. He shares in the fans’ frustrations of having no hockey but believes in the self-isolation methods mandated by governments worldwide.”Just stay positive, stick with it just like we are,” Draisaitl told reporters via video conference on Monday. “We all want to play, we all want to get back to playing as soon as possible, but right now there’s more important things in the world going on and we have to accept that. Hopefully, we can all get back to playing soon.”Along with the rest of the players in the NHL, Draisaitl has been asked to remain as sharp as possible for an unspecified return to the ice. General fitness is not a problem, as the 24-year-old says he has workout equipment at home, but maintaining hockey sharpness is something that he’s finding to be a challenge these days.With no access to a rink, Draisaitl is proving that necessity truly is the mother of invention. Sometimes you have to make do.Amid the global COVID-19 pandemic, athletes have been forced to alter their usual workout routines as they remain in self-isolation like the rest of us. Many have home gyms, so strength training and cardio can still be achieved.last_img

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