Photo Credit: By Andrew Carlson: SPM CO Photographer: Oct. 27, 2007
From: Denver Post
by Mike Chambers
Peter Mannino led the University of Denver hockey team to the 2005 NCAA championship as a freshman, becoming the second straight Pioneers goalie to be named MVP of the Frozen Four.
Now a senior and with netminding duties all to himself, the proud Italian from Farmington Hills, Mich., is a big reason the Pioneers are 4-2 and ranked No. 7 in the country.
Before heading to Minnesota for this weekend's two-game series against the Gophers, Mannino took off the pads to chat with Post college hockey writer Mike Chambers.
Q: You're a big sports fan, but I would think hockey tops the charts.
A: Hockey's No. 1, for sure. I watch a lot of hockey; I have the NHL (television) package. I also watch my Pistons and my Tigers.
Q: Tell me about your big Italian family.
A: Both parents are Italian. My mom came here from Italy when she was 15, 16 with her parents. Lots of pasta, good food. My dad's from a family of seven, and everybody except one sister still lives in Michigan. I'm very close to my family.
Q: Since you're an undrafted free agent, this is your final audition in front of scouts from every NHL club. Do you think about that?
A: This is a cliché, but team success will produce individual success. I feel like if we're successful as a team, everybody is getting what's coming to them in their own way. I have to win games. I have to be the goal- tender that puts the confidence in the team. I'm not looking past that.
Q: You're into fantasy league hockey. Any former teammates on your squad?
A: Matt Carle (Sharks) and Paul Stastny (Avalanche). I traded for them right away. So many familiar faces now. I love NHL '08 (video game) too. It's addicting. Being a passionate person about hockey, it's fun to take ownership like that.
Q: Do you miss your old classmate and roommate, Stastny?A: We keep in touch, grab lunch, whatever it takes. We talk about his game, my game. He's an avid sports fan. It's unbelievable how much he knows. But he asks how the team is going, and I ask him a lot of stuff about the NHL. It's a good relationship.
Q: I've heard you've never had an urge to have a cold beer. That's unusual for both a hockey player and a college student. Your thoughts?
A: I don't know what it is. My dad doesn't drink, and for some reason I just don't have the desire and don't like the taste. I know people can sit back and have one, but I'd rather have an iced tea or water. I don't have anything against it.
Q: So what do you do when your teammates that are of legal drinking age go to the tavern to hang out?
A: I'm there doing the same thing, just hanging out, but I'm not drinking anything. That's it.
Q: Since the 2005 NCAA championship game, you've had some terrific games while sharing duties with Glenn Fisher, but overall, your stats haven't been as good. What's changed?
A: I couldn't tell you what I did or didn't do. Things just didn't click as a team, whether I wasn't stepping up, or us blending as a team. We just weren't as successful as my freshman year.
Q: Favorite local Italian eateries?
A: Armandos Pizza & Pasta (near Swedish Medical Center). I took my mom there and got the approval and everything. Secondly, it'd be Maggiano's.
Between the pipes
Peter Mannino's top five favorite goalies:
1. Patrick Roy
2. Jean-Sebastien Giguere
3. Ryan Miller
4. Roberto Luongo
5. Martin Brodeur