Landshut (from our rapporteur) – Every summer he goes on holiday to Ústí nad Labem, where his father comes from. Thanks to that, he still didn’t get Czech out of his head, even though he has a strong American accent. “I like the Czechia and I’m happy to go back there. But I definitely feel more like an American. I live there all my life, I play hockey there and I study, “explains the 18-year-old striker.
Nevertheless, two years ago he peeked into the Czech national team at the camp of sixteen in Poruba. “It’s strange. I met a lot of players there, whom I played against on Sunday. But I’m used to playing for the US. I love wearing an American jersey. A dream come true, “Hejduk rejoices.
He was also present at last year’s World Championship of the Eighteen, where, however, he played only one match. He is also on the brink of the lineup at this championship in Germany, where the United States dominates. They advanced to the quarterfinals from the first place in the table. “We’re just good,” Hejduk laughs. “We play smart, fast and hard. We have a great transition to attack, but we also return very well. And we score a lot of goals,” he said.
A native of the suburbs of Denver, as the vast majority of this year’s selection, he works in a development program based in Plymouth. “We have been training together for two years. It’s a big advantage. I observe how we can record better and how we have quality powerlifting and play in the defensive zone, “he points out.
Until the age of sixteen, he played with his twin David for the Colorado Thunderbirds, where they were coached by their father Milan. “He coached me and my brother from an early age. The beginnings were great. Dad is a great coach, I learned a lot from him. Even though he was sometimes quite tough, “admits Marek Hejduk.
According to him, he has an excellent relationship with the twin. “It simply came to our notice then. When we were smaller, we both played in attack, so we went a little inside. But then David moved to the defense and now we are cheering, “explains the forward.
In July, he will have a draft for the NHL, which he would like to play one day. “It is my main goal, I will do everything to meet it. I have no expectations from the draft. I will be pleased if any team chooses me. But of course the dream is Colorado. That would be great, “smiles the hockey player.
Hejduk is also diligently concentrating on studying if his hockey career does not end up. From next year, he will be joining Harvard University, where he will play for the local university team in the US NCAA. “Hockey and study are there at the highest level. I always wanted to go there. I believe it will move me, “he hopes.
He does not yet know what field he will choose at the prestigious school. “Probably business or economics,” he thinks. Despite his hard work, he believes he will still play sports at the highest level. “New York Rangers defender Adam Fox, for example, has managed to do that. Hey. He should meet his twin, David, again at Harvard. “It would be great if we could play together again,” he adds.