Getty ImagesIt’s not so much Nashville Predators winger Nick Spaling misses an 82-game season; it’s that he misses the Floridian weather.
That’s a perk when facing the Eastern Conference: Heading down to face the Southeast Division’s Lightning and Panthers, with the games somewhat spaced out on the schedule. Instead, it’s a 48-game, Western Conference exclusive mini-marathon to the postseason, with the games bunched together.
“This is a busy schedule. We’re not used to as many games as there have been. Every other day,” said Spaling on Sunday, as the Predators prepared for a matinee against the Colorado Avalanche on Monday. “The first week or so of every-other-day was a little bit of a shock to the body. That was the toughest part.
"Not that it’s gotten any easier.”
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Spaling has 4 points in 15 games this season, averaging 16:34 TOI that includes 2:44 TOI shorthanded per game on average, second only to Paul Gaustad among Predators forwards. It’s his fourth season with the Preds, having endeared himself to fans as a solid utility player. He’ll be a restricted free agent this summer.
We spoke with Spaling about Nashville, Barry Trotz, Shea Weber’s captaincy, the team’s biggest rivals and his own season thus far. But first, we dive into the mind of a player who isn’t a foodie despite writing about food in his series of road diaries for The Tennessean:
In reading your Tennessean diaries, you come off as a foodie.
SPALING: No! [Laughs] I’m a really, really picky eater, actually.
So you’re the polar opposite of a foodie.
Honestly, I am. I’m a meat-and-potatoes kind of guy. I go to steakhouses. I like to change it up at restaurants, but I gotta know they have some simple [options].
What else is off Nick Spaling’s menu?
It’s a huge list. Tomatoes. Onions. Mushrooms. I don’t eat lettuce on sandwiches. Huge list. I’m almost embarrassed about my eating habits.
Can we talk about your loathing of lettuce on sandwiches, which is truly bizarre?
There’s no taste there. It’s just useless. I’d rather enjoy it without it.
Read More »from Puck Daddy chats with Nick Spaling about Nashville Predators, catching the Blackhawks and his war against lettuce