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21-year-old John Tavares eager to help find labor peace

New York Rangers v New York Islanders

UNIONDALE, NY - FEBRUARY 24: John Tavares #91 of the New York Islanders takes the shot against the New York Rangers at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum on February 24, 2012 in Uniondale, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

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What were you doing when you were 21-years-old? Most answers probably have something to do with a bar and shotgunning beers. For Islanders star John Tavares, he’s trying to help the players find labor peace with the owners.

Michael Grange of Sportsnet hears from Tavares about the role he’s trying to play in helping put together a new Collective Bargaining Agreement.

“I’m one of the young guys but I’m trying to be one of the leaders and play a big role and be someone that guys can look up to and ask questions,” he said after participating in nine hours of meetings at a Chicago hotel Tuesday, going over everything from the association’s internal finances to negotiating strategies they plan to take to the NHL. “With (the Islanders) we have a pretty young team so it’s important for us to be involved and aware of what’s happening.”

Are we sure he’s 21? That’s spoken like a guy wise beyond his years.

Tavares says he wants to play a role in things because he remembers being a bummed out kid in 2004-05 when the NHL locked out the players, killing a season in the process. Making sure to not be part of something like that is pretty good motivation to get it right. Then again, things are different when you’re on the other side of the fence.