The first person I wanted to talk to at prospects camp wasn't someone new or in from abroad, but rather a familiar face. Myles Stoesz was set to have an eventful summer and I wanted to see how it was going so far.
First he told me how his buddies back home were chirping him about the photo I took of him in his white snakeskin shoes. Ah, the price of fashion.
He's rented an apartment in Winnipeg, which is about 45 minutes from his hometown of Steinbach, MB, to be closer to where he trains (McDole Performance). He said he's really enjoying it, "it's the first summer I feel really good. My trainer has pumped me up, making me feel good about myself. Like I'm gonna improve a lot."
He's also using a skating treadmill three times a week for the past 3-4 weeks, and already in camp, teammate Scott Marchesi remarked to Stoesz that he looks better as far as skating. He's also seeing a skating coach, Andrea Rawlings. He's been on the ice just twice with her so far, but said, "she's helped out a lot. I'm gonna keep going all summer (three days a week)."
I told him I thought he looked a bit better skating, but what I noticed is that his butt looks bigger. "Thanks!" he laughed. "I've got a little bit of a bubble butt...I've been told." I asked if it was the pants he was assigned or if his butt really is bigger. "I've gained like 10 lbs, maybe it's all gone to my butt," he said.
In April, Stoesz told me he hoped to get a summer job where he could make commission, like maybe Best Buy. He ended up getting a security guard job instead, which he starts when he gets back. He'll do Winnipeg Blue Bombers (CFL) games, and concerts. "Like a Show Pro?" I asked, referring to the yellow jacketed people at the Gwinnett Arena. "Yeah, I guess. Pretty much," he said. He'll do pat-downs for alcohol and check purses. "Otherwise I just stand there at the front like this (demonstrating his cross-armed tough look, then laughing). It'll be fun. Beat down some little punk kids or something."
Myles' little brother Rio is a very good motocross racer, so I asked him about how he's doing this year. He said that just Sunday Rio won first place in the spring series. "He had a slow start, some bike problems," Myles said. I asked who was more famous now, him or Rio? "If you Google us, I've got more hits," Myles said. "That's what we go by in our family. I've got like 5-6 pages, he's only got 2." Rio is only 13, so Myles definitely got a head start. "Give him a couple years. I don't know how much longer he's gonna ride though because it's starting to cost quite a bit. You have to spend 5 grand on a bike every year. Getting kinda pricey so if anyone's listening out there -- sponsors?" he laughed.
I noticed that his bottom teeth were still not fixed -- the ones that were knocked out last September in training camp. He has the posts in, but needs the actual teeth on top. It was supposed to be done in April before he went back home. "They didn't end up fixing them cuz I went to a different dentist and they had different parts, believe it or not. I'm supposed to be doing it this week actually. But if they don't get it done, then main camp. It's crappy. It sounds good to get brand new gibs, but I wouldn't wish it on anybody. A year and $20,000 of work."
What does he think of Jeff Pyle being interviewed for the Chicago Wolves? "Kudos to him. He definitely deserves it. I think he's kind of like the John Anderson of the ECHL. He's got a hell of a record there, what is he like the third winningest coach? Pyler's a heck of a guy. I wouldn't think twice about putting in good words for him."
In the course of talking about going to see his brother race, he mentioned his fiance. This was news. They got engaged in April at the end of the Gladiators' season. There not yet a plan for the wedding date. She's trying to get into dental hygiene school right now, so things a a bit up in the air. (Dan Turple got married this week too, Stoesz mentioned, so it's going around right now.) I pointed out the irony of her becoming a dental hygienist and him having no bottom teeth. He couldn't argue.