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Talk with Blashill sparked Mantha to become different player

Talk with Blashill sparked Mantha to become different player
Published On: Mon, Aug 06
Oct 17, 2015; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Detroit Red Wings head coach Jeff Blashill talks to his team during the second period against Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

Maybe five or 10 years from now, if Anthony Mantha is a huge star in the the NHL,A it will be easy to point to one of the transformational moments in his career.

Both Mantha and coach Jeff Blashill singled out a January game in New Jersey, after a morning skate, when Blashill showed two sets of videos to his young player.

One of them had Mantha motoring around the ice, engaged, being an impactful player. The other video, not so much.

a€œThere was a big difference,a€ Mantha said after this season ended.A 

When Mantha, 23, signed a two-year contract contract in mid-July, worth $6.6 million,A it was with the belief he can do more.

Mantha will still be a restricted free agent in two years, and he is confident the mild success hea€™s had his first two seasons a€” Mantha led the Wings with 24 goals last season a€” can build, and hea€™ll be able to land a larger, long-term contract after this contract concludes.

a€œI want to be a big-impact player on this team,a€ Mantha said. a€œThis year, Ia€™ve made strides. (But) I dona€™t think Ia€™ve reached my full potential yet.a€

There have been several instances over the last two seasons where Blashill has either scratched Mantha from the lineup, benched him during a game, or the two have had conversations where Blashill has demanded more out of Mantha.

Read the complete news article here...

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