A little bit later today the Fargo Force will have their draft for Sunday’s skills challenge.
Forwards Bryn Chyzyk (North Dakota) and Austin Farley (Minnesota-Duluth) were named captains for the event after they were chosen by fans to lead the teams.
With leadership comes responsibility and the chance to talk some strategy. Chyzyk said Monday night he’s been thinking about who to choose and he gave a bit of a hint who he might go with.
“I’ve already told guys I am accepting bribes,” Chyzyk said. “Those who want to buy me a few free meals at Noodles and Company or Qdoba will only increase their chances of me picking them.”
Chyzyk said he and Farley, who are linemates and close friends, said they’ve talked about how nice it is to be chosen by fans to lead the team. Fans selected the two by voting via Twitter, Facebook and through the team’s website.
They also got a laugh out of their current situations. Chyzyk and Farley were sitting in a suite during Friday’s game when it was announced they were named as captains.
Chyzyk missed last weekend’s series after falling into the boards and suffering a bit of an injury above his left eye two weeks ago. Farley has been out since early February with a foot injury. He was walking around without a boot last week but is expected to be out until March 10.
“You know, we haven’t discussed it,” Chyzyk said about he and Farley participating in the competition. “Me and Austin are in different scenarios when it comes to our injuries. But I think I should be able to participate. I’ll have to check with our trainer but I am 90 percent sure I will participate.”
Chyzyk said he’s had some teammates plead with him to be on his team while others have just threatened him.
Either way, he is taking everyone’s concerns into consideration.
Chyzyk said the important thing about an event like this is picking the right group of players. This is where Chyzyk became really serious about a piece of strategy he’s looking at employing.
“I might take (goaltenders Zane Gothberg and Reed Peters) with my first two picks,” Chyzyk said. “That’ll really screw Farley over. He might have to pick (Colton) Hargrove and put him in net or something.”
Chyzyk said quite a few players on the team are excited about the event because it gives everyone a chance to really know how is the team’s fastest skater or who does have the hardest shot.
There are times after practice where players will have a mini-competition to see who can outdo who, but having it on a larger scale in front of fans should settle whatever questions any players might have about individual skills.
He added the hardest part about choosing a team is there are certain players who could come out of nowhere to be a surprise in a certain category. For example, he mentioned how there might be a defenseman on the team who could be the fastest skater but may never get a chance to show it off during a game.
“I am a little worried about the accuracy part because a guy like (Jonny) Brodzinski and Farley are really good at that so I have to be careful,” he said. “But the breakaway is going to be fun. There have been some guys doing some outrageous moves in practice. It should be a lot of fun.”