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Tyler Myers could learn from Zdeno Chara

May 17, 2013, 4:49 PM EDT

Tyler Myers Getty Images

If Tyler Myers ever wants to become the next Zdeno Chara, he may want to note what’s being said the day after the Bruins’ leviathan captain logged a remarkable 38:02 of ice time last night against the Rangers.

“He maybe plugs himself in at night,” rookie Boston d-man Dougie Hamilton said of Chara. “It’s pretty incredible.”

“For him, the way he’s conditioned and the way he prepares and takes care of himself, he’s learned to be able to deal with those minutes,” forward Gregory Campbell added.

We only mention Myers because he’s the topic of an article on the Olean Times Herald website today.

In the article, Sabres coach Ron Rolston discusses his hopes for Buffalo’s young blue-liner.

As any Sabres observer can tell you, the 6-foot-8 23-year-old has struggled with his game since being named rookie of the year in 2009-10.

“I think he understands where he needs to go and the growth he needs to have here, especially in the summer to get himself prepared for being an elite defenseman and one of the best defensemen in this league, which he’s been before, we know he can be next year,” Rolston said.

“But a lot of that’s going to come in the preparation and his growth over the summer, just to continue to obviously, one, work on his body, and then, two, just make sure he’s just simplifying things and playing within himself. And when that happens, he’s going to be a dominant player for us next year.”

Myers has admitted his conditioning and diet need improvement.

“I’ll be the first to admit I definitely need to turn things around, get back to that path of improving, working on the things have made me successful. It’s just a matter of working that much harder this offseason,” he said.

Perhaps Myers can take solace in the fact Chara, 36, didn’t develop into an elite d-man overnight.

But as former Ottawa teammate Marian Hossa recalled back in 2009, Chara was willing to put in the work.

“No one worked harder than Z,” said Hossa. “He would run up steps in buildings, lift weights, mountain bike — all to build up strength. But his footwork got better and better with all of the lateral stops and starts, quick-twitch exercises he did.”

Myers is just one year into a seven-year, $38 million contract. If the Sabres are going to get back into the playoffs, they’ll need him to be the cornerstone defenseman they expected him to be when they gave him the big money.

  1. nunan - May 17, 2013 at 5:00 PM

    I think Hamilton and Myers came into the league with similar upside, attributes, and skill set. Hamilton is definitely in a better spot having Chara there.

  2. sabatimus - May 17, 2013 at 5:44 PM

    I think Chara definitely has superior conditioning, but he generally cannot get the puck up ice to save his life. When Chara’s purely defending against an opponent with the puck, he’s great.

    • sabatimus - May 17, 2013 at 6:19 PM

      Those people thumbing this down clearly haven’t watched the last 2 seasons of Bruins hockey.

      • bman7206 - May 17, 2013 at 7:30 PM

        Bet my next paycheck the only thumbs up is yours. Clown.

  3. imleftcoast - May 17, 2013 at 6:07 PM

    Chara played more than an hour in Games 6 and 7 against Toronto, and he hustled to the net on the third goal in Game 7. He’s obviously in ridiculously good condition. I totally admire (and hate) the guy.

  4. buff80 - May 17, 2013 at 6:27 PM

    Not sure Myers has the discipline and drive…he already got the big contract which doesn’t help. Way to go Darcy you tool

    • lordstanley65 - May 17, 2013 at 8:59 PM

      Agreed. Should have starved him for awhile and made him work for that payday.

  5. thedavesiknowiknow - May 17, 2013 at 6:39 PM

    Do “hockey minds” compare Myers to Chara because they’re both tall? The similarities end there.

    • mehetmet - May 18, 2013 at 8:09 AM

      yes, they do. It’s just like the “football” minds who compare RGIII, Newton, Vick, Wilson…They are all black, but similarities are few and far between.

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