From: Ryan Stanzel---HOUSTON AEROS, BE A FAN---
Director of Communications
Wednesday, October 27, 2004
713.361.7930 (Direct Line)
Aeros defenseman Brent Burns recently took time to answer questions submitted by aeros.com users. Due to the high volume of e-mails, not all were able to be answered. Check www.aeros.com soon for your chance to vote for the next Q&A subject.
Matt from Columbia, Tenn.
Q: Who was your favorite player growing up?
BB: Mark Messier. I always looked up to him. He was a good leader and a great hockey player.
Jenny from White Bear Lake, Minn.
Q: Brent, what is the biggest difference in lifestyle change from Minnesota to Houston that you had to encounter? Which place, as of now, do you like more?
BB: The heat is the big difference. You go from not being able to go outside because its so cold, to not being able to go outside because its too hot. They are both great places.
Q: Brent, what's with the hair man??
BB: I had my hair short all last year and it wasnt working for me. I thought Id get some flow behind the helmet to make me faster, so leave me alone about the hair! (laughing)
Morgan from Houston
Q: Brent, we are pleased to have you in Houston and welcome the energy that you bring. I am a strong believer in placing the emphasis on the person's abilities and not their age. Has your age been an issue with any of the guys in Minnesota and here in Houston? I am looking forward to a great Aeros season.
BB: No it hasnt been an issue. Everyones pretty young in Houston. I might be the butt end of a couple of jokes, but its fine with everyone and its fine with me.
Q: What do you hope to gain from this year with the Aeros, having spent most of last year with the Wild? Also, I know its early, but can you compare the level of play this year with that of the NHL?
BB: The level of play is very similar. It may be more intense here to play. In the NHL, its a lot more systems. Down here, guys run around a little more, its more intense. I hope to gain experience, and hopefully to learn the position of defense. Our coaches have already helped me out a lot. Its going well, I hope I get some experience and hope to be better when I go to Minnesota and play D.
From Mitch, one of the "MR BURNS" guys in Saint Paul, Minn.
Q: After this season, where do you think you'll feel most comfortable - defense or forward?
BB: I already feel more comfortable on D now. You get the puck more and get into the game a little more. In defense, if you make a mistake everyone in the rink knows it, so it makes you focus more. You cant be lackadaisical.
Q: Hey Brent. Do you have any pre-game rituals/ superstitions?
BB: I eat at Olive Garden before every home game. I usually listen to the same CDs (Good Charlotte, Guns & Roses). I always go on the bench before game and think of what I have to do. I go out on the ice and shoot the puck with Foysee (Matt Foy) and (Erik) Reitz. Im not really too superstitious. Ill usually wear the same necklace until I dont score or I have a bad game.
Stewart from Whitby, Ont.
Q: Hey Burns, I've actually shared the same ice with you back when you were an ankle burner (a young kid). How does it feel to be such an amazing hockey player and be such a bad golfer? All the proof in the pudding in Nashville!
BB: (Laughing) Ive been working on my golf game, but theres a little snake in the grass that keeps getting me (family joke).
NOTE: Stewart is Brents cousin
Michael from Barrie, Ont.
Q: How important do you think your workouts with old fat guys at NTR in Barrie have been to your career?
BB: (Laughing) It taught me how to fight through a lot of hooks and slashes and spears.
Riley in Barrie, Ont.
Q: How do you handle the move from forward to defense and back? What adjustments do you have to make, mentally to prepare for each position? Which position do you like to play the most? Thanks Burnzie,
BB: Its a totally different game for your legs. Skating forward and hitting are a lot harder on your legs. Defense is a lot harder work mentally. Its draining. Its a lot of talk with whoever youre playing with. You have to think about what you have to do, and youve got to be sharp when youre out there.
Melanie in Sugar Land
Q: What do you do in your spare time? Have you been out in the Houston nightlife yet?
BB: I like to relax, play golf and X-Box. I like to go to the Galleria.
Malia from Houston
Q: Who are some of the best mentors on the team? What have you learned so far this season?
BB: (Todd) Reirden has really helped me out on D. So has (Patrick) Traverse and (Ray) Giroux. All the older guys are really good, putting up with my defensive mishaps. Theyve been good at giving me tips. Youve got to look up to them. Theyve been a big help.
Jennifer from Katy
Q: You were the youngest Aeros player last year and this year. Do you have any advice for high school players looking up to you?
BB: Just work hard and keep your head high. And try not to get too high or low no matter what happens, and good things will happen.