Last summer, Minnesota native Jordan Schroeder signed with the hometown Wild. After playing in 25 regular season games and three Stanly Cup Playoff contests, the former University of Minnesota standout is working tirelessly to make the opening night roster. Before the start of the season, the 24-year-old talked about getting into hockey, his favorite summer activity and being followed by cameras for Becoming Wild.
Minnesota Hockey Journal’s Mike Doyle went 1-on-1 with Schroeder as he gears up for the season.
MHJ: Your father, John, was a basketball player in Pipestone and when they took you to basketball tryouts, you told him you wanted to be a hockey player. Did that cause any family tension?
Jordan Schroeder: (Laugh) I think he was more interested in basketball, and he also played baseball in college. I grew up playing basketball and baseball, and hockey wasn’t in the picture. Once we moved to Lakeville, a bunch of neighborhood kids, who were older, were playing street hockey and ice hockey on the pond in the winters. I think that really grabbed my attention and I said, “Dad, I want to play hockey.” So, the rest is history.
MHJ: Did your father play hockey at all?
JS: No. He claims he did for one year (laugh). But I don’t think he did at all.
MHJ: Another big passion in Minnesota is fishing and you went to the Mike Yeo Classic this fall. How did that go?
JS: It was a lot of fun, especially being able to help out different charities and organizations. Most tournaments you do for charity is a golf event, but to be able to switch it up and go out on the boat and do something I enjoy. It was a lot of fun being out on Lake Minnetonka. I fish a lot. We have a cabin up on Lake Vermillion and it’s a big passion outside of hockey in the summer.
MHJ: How did you get into fishing?
JS: My dad. He grew up fishing and we grew up going to the cabin. He would always take us out and taught us how to take a fish off the hook and everything else. I owe the fishing side to him, not sure about the hockey (laugh).
MHJ: Becoming Wild (the team’s behind-the-scenes television series) followed you this summer. What was that experience like?
JS: It was fun. It’s definitely different when you have a camera in your face all day (laugh), rather than when you’re on the ice for a game or in the locker room getting interviewed. You’re kind of watching what you do and what you say, but a few hours you get more comfortable. It was a cool experience. We had a good lunch downtown at one of my favorite sushi spots, we went to St. Thomas Academy and my parents’ home in Lakeville. It actually worked out really well because there was a charity event that night for my dad’s company, Cambria and Camp Cambria, which helps kids with juvenile arthritis. Big and Rich played a concert on Lake Minnetonka; it was a good way to end a fun day.
MHJ: You had mentioned doing work for charity earlier. Is that another passion, giving back to those in need?
JS: It’s definitely something I’m trying to more of. When you’re younger, you’re not really aware of it as much. As you get older and more mature, you realize how important it is to help others. For us, just being able to go to an event means a lot to a lot of people. Whenever I get asked or able to help out, I’m willing to do so.
MHJ: Gearing up for hockey season, your second with the Wild. What are your goals coming in this year as you again battle for a roster spot?
JS: You have to have the same mindset every time you step foot on the ice. You have to earn your spot. It’s my goal to be on the opening day roster and be in that lineup on opening night. So that’s what I’m working for.
MHJ: Is it difficult mentally or something you’ve been preparing for?
JS: Once you turn pro, it’s a lot different. It’s not a college team. This is your job and your livelihood, so it can take a toll mentally. As you get older and gain more experience, you learn how to handle it. When you’re younger, you think you know everything, but you don’t. As you get older, it’s your experiences that you gain knowledge from. With each and every year since I’ve turned pro, I continue to learn what it takes and what you have to do to maintain.