Max Reinhart, one-on-one



(Patrick johnston was at the Heat/Wolves game Saturday night. He got a chance to speak to Max Reinhart after the game)

How do you get a hockey player to give answers that might provide a hint of insight? Ask them questions that don’t relate to their current season, game, or even moment. The professional hockey player has heard so many questions so many times before, it’s a challenge to give them something different to work with. Here’s one reporter’s attempt to be different.

FlamesNation caught up with Max Reinhart after Abbotsford’s 4-1 win over Chicago on Saturday night. We told him it would be five questions, but it ended up being seven. 

Patrick Johnston: Max, what’s your best hockey memory?

Max Reinhart: Winning the WHL championship a couple years ago. It was my first major title; it’s something I’ll remember for a long time.

What was the lesson you learned from achieving that – obviously It’s one of the biggest games you can win…

It’s winning – getting that experience, I had a very good playoffs that year, I learned a lot from it. It was just easy to move forward from there.

At the other end of the spectrum, what’s your worst hockey memory?

I don’t know, losing in general, I guess. It’s never fun. I don’t think I have one that sticks out too much.

What was the toughest thing you did in preparation for this season?

Getting in the gym and trying to put on that weight. Obviously with my body type, I struggle with putting on and keeping on weight, so I had to be in the gym a lot. That was the toughest part, when the weather’s nice, to stay in the gym.

What were you having to do more than anything to find success in the gym?

It’s just a lot of weight training, that’s how you build muscle, that’s the weight you want. I was in there every day, grinding it out. A lot of weights; that’s not my strong suit, that’s my little brother’s strong suit. We’re in the gym a lot together and he keeps me motivated to keep getting stronger and to keep up with him.

Does having a little brother who’s seeing some success as a player serve to motivate you?

Yeah, I got not just one, but two who are doing very well so that’s even extra motivation. Everyone’s having success and it’s fun to share. 

Last question – what’s your best way to kill time, a Wikipedia hole, a Youtube hole or just staring off into space?

Haha Youtube I guess. Whatever comes up!

    • SmellOfVictory

      I’d still like to see him improve his skating as well. He’s not painfully slow, but his breakaway speed doesn’t exactly strike fear into opposing defencemen, either.

      Props on asking some less mundane questions, Patrick. I really do hate the standard question set that these players get asked ad nauseum.

      • T&A4Flames

        I agree. Watching him play in the televised game this weekend, his skating seems choppy & a little lumbersome. But, he is so very smart with the puck and his positioning. His PK skills are very strong.

      • My pleasure – as I said, you want to learn something, ask anyone about something they actually *do*, don’t just do a rehash of the same questions they’ve heard a million times. Reinhart noticeably loosened as the questions moved along; he took his time considering his answers.

  • Watching him at the prospect camp this summer he sure didn’t look all that small. It might of been because of some of the smaller guys at camp made him look bigger. I did like the part of the interview when he said his worst moment in hockey was losing in general. In my opinion his comment wasn’t just lip service and he comes off as very sincere. I’m pretty excited to see him in Flames red hopefully sooner rather than later.

    • Seeing him this weekend, I think he’s in for a longer apprenticeship than someone like Baertschi. His skating is okay, but he’s no speed demon and not terribly fluid. There’s times where it’s clear he still needs that extra second or extra step to make a play, but that time isn’t there in the pro game anymore. And, as he mentions here, he needs to get bigger and stronger.

    • He was absolutely sincere about that answer. He gave me the ‘losing in general’ part right away, but did pause a moment to see if he could think of a more specific example. Sports psychologists will tell you the fact that he’s not dwelling on past mistakes is a very, very good sign.

  • Jeff Lebowski

    The little I’ve seen him play, the more impressed I am nonetheless. Max rarely makes stupid plays. He’s responsible all over the ice so you know he doesn’t save energy just for offense. When your effort is hgh for the little things its harder to consistently dent the scoresheet (G,A).

    Max does control the puck and is a heady player, glad to see him with Horak. I think once Max gets confidence with his shot, getting it off quick and either scoring ouright or creating opportunities off it, the game will open up for him and he will make more offensive plays. He’s gotta make defenders respect his ability to put the puck on net (he’s not gonna blow past guys).

    Until then I think he will keep earning ice time by being smart with the puck. Once he gets confident by making things happen, he’ll try more to be a plus player rather than an even player (if that makes sense). Like Kesler did (that doesn’t mean I think they have similar skills).