THE 00’S / Ian Walker
“Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I will accomplish what others can’t.”
– Jerry Rice
With the human body comes a blank slate. It’s an opportunity to work with it over time. For Everett Silvertips defenseman Ian Walker, his 16-year old season represents a promising start – maybe one where he hasn’t even begun to scratch the surface of his potential.
Stacked at a towering a 6-foot-2 and slender 170 pounds, the native of Vancouver, B.C. became a regular in the Silvertips lineup very early – even making his debut on Opening Night before a national audience on Shaw TV – and built a 42-game season along with five assists. With a shortage of centers early in the playoffs, he even managed four valuable games of postseason experience, exposing him to the savage elements that accompany playoff hockey.
Naturally shifting to the back end and receiving on-the-job training as part of a defense that was anchored by experience by season’s end, Walker’s inquisitive and engaging personality was a natural fit in the Silvertips dressing room. His blueline professor, Tips assistant coach Mitch Love, shared more on Walker’s progress and to-do list for the summer:
MITCH LOVE, ON THE OVERALL ASSESSMENT OF IAN WALKER FOR HIS ROOKIE SEASON:
“With Ian Walker he played less hockey than Montana (Onyebuchi) did throughout the year. It’s tough having two, young 16-year old defensemen on the back end and squeeze them in the lineup with the veterans we had on the back end, to get their 40 games. But with that being said, I think Ian did a heck of a job in terms of the process and his progression during the year.”
ON HIS OBJECTIVES FOR THE OFFSEASON:
“Through practices and daily workouts, the one thing Ian would attest to – along with myself – is he has to have a big offseason in the weight room. He has to get a little bit stronger. His frame is there. It’s just a matter of gaining ten pounds of brute strength to defend better. His shot – getting pucks to the net – for his offensive game – you have to be a little bit stronger. I think that’ll be a big thing for him.”
“He does a lot of great things. He’s got a great sense for the game. He’s a student. He asks a ton of questions which is something any coach will relish and accept. I think his future will be bright as long as he continues to strengthen his body.”