HeadStrong

Flyers' Claude Giroux on working through struggles: 'I think it's important to reach out'

Flyers' Claude Giroux on working through struggles: 'I think it's important to reach out'

Claude Giroux couldn’t have scored 241 NHL goals without some skill.

But, according to the Flyers’ captain, that’s not the only reason for his success.

“I think most of the game is mental,” Giroux said in an interview with NBC Sports Philadelphia. “I think a lot of players spend a lot of time working on their speed and their weight and making sure that they’re ready, and they don’t put enough time for the mental part of it. When you get to the third period and you have a chance to win the game or tie it up, I think mentally, if you’re able to be strong and put everything that is around you not in your head, you’ll be able to just perform better.”

Giroux made his NHL debut as a 20-year-old on Feb. 19, 2008. He’s experienced his share of low moments since then — and plenty of high ones, of course. He thinks his willingness to reach out when he’s been struggling has been key, including during a 21-game streak without a goal in 2013 that lasted from April 15 to Nov. 9. 

“It’s important to have different people talking to you, and different people for you to talk to them,” he said. “I’ve been doing some stuff since I was probably 20 years ago. I think it’s important to reach out. I remember one year I didn’t have a goal for the first 20 games of the season and I would go back home and I would have a tough time. I’d have a lot of struggles.

"Usually when we have a bad game it continues with a second and third bad game, so it’s important to know how to act and how to think. If you keep things too personal and you think about it too much or you want it too much, sometimes it’s just going to get worse.”

NBC Sports Regional Networks has launched a multi-platform campaign on mental health and men's health, HeadStrong: Mental Health and Sports, for the month of November. You can find more information about the initiative here.

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games easily on your device.

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Jakub Voracek knows sleep is vital — but never easy — during NHL grind

Jakub Voracek knows sleep is vital — but never easy — during NHL grind

Jakub Voracek has played 865 career NHL games. Since the 2012-13 season, he has missed only 13 games, playing 546 out of a possible 559 contests.

He understands the gauntlet that is the NHL schedule. It doesn't make it any easier, though.

"Me, personally, I’ve had trouble sleeping after games," Voracek said in an interview with NBC Sports Philadelphia. "There are times when you fall asleep at 4, 4:30 a.m., and you’ve got to be up by 10 a.m. or 9:30 a.m. to go to practice or have a game the next day."

Voracek owns the NHL’s seventh-most assists since the 2013-14 season. Confidence and a positive mindset are important to his game, which makes daily rest crucial.

"Try to get as much sleep as you can," Voracek said. "It might not seem for a lot of people outside as a grind, but it is — traveling, time changes, three [games] in four [days]."

NBC Sports Regional Networks has launched a multi-platform campaign on mental health and men's health, HeadStrong: Mental Health and Sports, for the month of November. You can find more information about the initiative here.

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games easily on your device.

More on the Flyers

The highlight Mike Scott remembers to stay positive

The highlight Mike Scott remembers to stay positive

It’s hard to imagine Mike Scott being negative.

Since he arrived in a trade from the Clippers last season, Scott has become a fan favorite and steady, veteran contributor. He immersed himself even more into Philadelphia over the summer by crashing weddings and taking part in Nerf gun wars.

But even the most jovial and fun people can fall victim to negative thoughts. In the past, he’s let it affect his play on the court.

“You don’t want anything negative going through your mind because you’re not going to perform well,” Scott said. “I’ve done it before. I’ve had games or something off the court has happened and I was feeling bad or I just wasn’t myself. It factors in your play a lot."

As he’s gotten older, Scott has gotten better at staying positive.

One of his secrets? Watching old highlights of himself playing well. 

His biggest moment as a Sixers occurred when he hit a game-winning three in Game 4 of the team’s first-round playoff matchup against the Nets. That shot gave the Sixers a commanding 3-1 series lead.

“I always go back to that Game 4 Brooklyn shot,” Scott said. “That shot felt good. I felt like I wasn’t really contributing like I wanted to, I didn’t have the game that I wanted to, but that shot did feel good and I always go back to that shot. It makes me feel like I can play in this league, I belong in this league, I can hit big shots.”

Scott talked about the power of positivity and having teammates you can depend on in an interview, which you can watch above.

NBC Sports Regional Networks has launched a multi-platform campaign on mental health and men's health, HeadStrong: Mental Health and Sports, for the month of November. You can find more information about the initiative here.

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games easily on your device.

More on the Sixers