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Toronto, ON • Canada • 40 Years Old • Male
On a hot, sweltering Toronto afternoon, I meet up with the Leafs 2009 top pick Nazem Kadri. This was the 2nd time I have met the young budding star and to say I was surprised is putting it mildly. The first time I met Nazem was September 2009, a scrawny young kid listed at 170lbs. I doubted he'd tip 165 in a wet suit when I first met him. This time around I was blown away. Maybe it was the heat, or maybe it was just the excitement of seeing this rising young star again at the beginning of his career. He had obviously started to fill out, and the results of all his hard work at the gym were more than evident. I bit my lip and thought to myself "Oh to be 19 again". What was once scrawny was now filled out and buff. Muscles rippled, pecs stood out, the face of the young lad had started to turn into that of a man. He sensed my shock when I saw him and greeted him.

"Wow", I say. "You're not how I remember"
Kadri giggles nervously and replies "Yeah, it's taken a lot of hard work".

I must have stared a moment too long because he seems to get nervous just then and suggests we move on and get the interview under way. I forget he's still a boy even though he's looking more and more like a man. I offer to buy him a smoothie from the Papaya Hut in downtown Toronto but he tells me he's on a strict diet. I grab my smoothie, and we leisurely stroll down Yonge St. and discuss his potential to make the Leafs this season.

Kadri is realistic about his chances this upcoming season and knows he has a tremendous opportunity if he works hard. He tells me it's been his dream since he was a kid to make the NHL and the opportunity presented by the Leafs is one he doesn't want to miss out on.

"We have a young core of players here in Toronto, the youngest in the league, I just hope I can show enough at camp to stick with the big club". Kadri has been penciled into the Leafs lineup by many observers but he knows it won't be that easy. "Last season was tough. I really thought I could stick in the NHL, but I realized later on that I still had a ways to go. I set out to improve myself and my game in hopes of making it this season"

The willingness and the ability to improve are two strong traits in this young man. After a slow start to the OHL season, Kadri picked up the pace to finish with 93 points in only 56 games and was named as a finalist for OHL player of the year. He continuted his strong play into the playoffs where he netted an incredible 27 points in only 12 games. These are stats that should get any Leafs fan excited about this young man's potential.

We briefly chat about his muslim upbringing and how he is being viewed as a potential role model in the league, a barrier smasher so to speak.
"I don't think about that stuff", replies Kadri, "I'm just me, I try to be the best I can be, if I inspire any other kids that's great, but I don't see myself as anything special in that regard".

I tell him he IS special, and he nervously accepts my compliment.

As we end the interview, I watch him walk away from me, I gaze and think about the future of this young star, this mere boy who is now filling out a man's body. The heat from the afternoon has coated Kadri's shirt in sweat, and I can easily make out the physique under his shirt. I still can't believe how much he's filled out, and I have to finally turn away as I bite my lip again.

I can't see into the future, but I predict great things for Kadri. Leafs fans should prepare themselves for success, with Kadri on a young Leafs team, the future is oh so bright.
Filed Under:   MapleLeafs  
July 8, 2010 7:46 PM ET | Delete
Are you gay? Not that there is any thing wrong with that.
July 8, 2010 8:13 PM ET | Delete
ya i was thinking the same thing.... usually a guy doesnt say how good a guy looks. lol
July 9, 2010 1:32 PM ET | Delete
not only is this super gay but its a 40 year old man talking about a teenage boy, are you a pedophile? i think Kadri should look you up on sexoffenders.com and maybe hire some security next time you attempt to buy him a roofie smoothie you fackin creep
July 9, 2010 3:45 PM ET | Delete
Very gay. Too many 'lip biting' references to his physique...Stop creeping on our future stars!
July 9, 2010 3:51 PM ET | Delete
What the hell is this??? th
July 9, 2010 4:02 PM ET | Delete
My god, this Man-Crush makes Piere McGuire look less creepy, if that's possible.
July 9, 2010 4:04 PM ET | Delete
Very troubling, indeed...
July 9, 2010 5:05 PM ET | Delete
The title alone is a little perverted
July 9, 2010 5:22 PM ET | Delete
Does anyone have a gaydar here? P.S. Your second last paragraph is really creepy man.
July 9, 2010 5:34 PM ET | Delete
Dude? WTF?
July 9, 2010 6:10 PM ET | Delete
I can't decide whether it would be funnier if you actually had this conversation with the kid, and wrote this blog after, or whether this is just your gay Leafs porn fantasy
July 9, 2010 6:12 PM ET | Delete
SHUT UP ALL OF YOUTHIS IS VINTAGE MANICSHIS REPORTS SATISFY IN SO MANY WAYS
July 9, 2010 6:16 PM ET | Delete
This is Gold. Pure, Gold.
July 9, 2010 6:16 PM ET | Delete
Wait, I just went back and read his old blog on Coliacovo now I'm convinced this is a gimmick fakepost. disappointing
July 9, 2010 6:23 PM ET | Delete
Delicious blog.
July 9, 2010 6:26 PM ET | Delete
Yeah it might have been unintentionally gay but then the continual references to how sweaty he was made it cask-strength gay
July 9, 2010 6:30 PM ET | Delete
Also "smoothie from the Papaya Hut", wtf
July 9, 2010 6:41 PM ET | Delete
Awesome.
July 9, 2010 6:54 PM ET | Delete
OMG THIS IS SOOOO FUNNY!!! Man i hope that person's doing it on purpose cuz if hes not then this is very homosexual indeed.
July 9, 2010 7:01 PM ET | Delete
LOL, WHAT A QUEER! AT LEAST KADRI DIDN'T BLOW YOU UP!
July 9, 2010 7:51 PM ET | Delete
You truly are a cut above, sir.
July 9, 2010 7:54 PM ET | Delete
Manics, how was your smoothie??
July 9, 2010 8:41 PM ET | Delete
This is absolutely hilarious.
July 9, 2010 9:01 PM ET | Delete
Wow honey. I got extremely hard reading your latest play on words. Can't wait until you get home so I can rub you down.
July 9, 2010 9:06 PM ET | Delete
Gabe Ruth, I can attest to his smoothie. Rich, full of volume, lots of protein and goes down oh so smooth!
July 9, 2010 9:29 PM ET | Delete
This is epic to the maxxxxx lol
July 9, 2010 9:31 PM ET | Delete
I swear this guy is a habs fan. The last time I've read passion like this for a player was when Lapierre blogged about Carey Price.
July 9, 2010 11:21 PM ET | Delete
Oh... how I miss your Colaiacovo blogs...
July 10, 2010 2:49 AM ET | Delete
this was funny as hell haha
July 10, 2010 8:18 AM ET | Delete
I didn't think gay people followed sports
July 10, 2010 12:19 PM ET | Delete
Wow.
July 10, 2010 1:06 PM ET | Delete
Tell me sweetie, when are you inviting Kadri to our condo for a night of naked Wii and dinner?
July 10, 2010 11:15 PM ET | Delete
I don't blame Kadri for being ansy/nervous when u were checking out his body. You also couldn't help notice how Kadri's very sweaty shirt gripped his muscular phsyique. Not that there's anything wrong with that As you watched Kadri walkedaway, was your mind really on the future of the Maple Leafs? Again I say, not thatthere is anything wrong with that ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
Pep
July 12, 2010 4:17 PM ET | Delete
This sounds like the introduction to a gay romance novel.
July 12, 2010 5:17 PM ET | Delete
This is basically a hockey version of this http://m.assetbar.com/achewood/one_strip?b=M^a11f09b8576e606bcb5038dfdb92fb821
July 19, 2010 9:11 PM ET | Delete
im gonna field a guess here, and say this guy was a tlusty fan, please try to keep youre creepy, fruity hands off this teams young stars, we dont want another jiri tlusty situation
February 11, 2012 6:12 PM ET | Delete
nice job Ken
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