Beyond The Benches

Go Beyond the Benches w/ Mickey Lang

Mickey Lang is one of the top 10 highest goal scorers in the ECHL so far this season. The 27-year-old,  stands at 5-foot-10 inches, and was born in Reno, Nevada. Lang has been busy lately making the switch from playing with the Fort Wayne Komets to the Orlando Solar Bears, and was just called up to the American Hockey League.

Lang took some time to answer some of our questions here:

Beyond the Benches: How long have you been playing ice hockey?

Mickey Lang: I started skating when I was two-and-a-half years old and began playing ice hockey when I was four-years-old.

BB: What’s one of your most memorable moments playing the game?

ML: My junior year in college my team Manhattanville was down by a goal in the ECAC west championship game with 6 seconds left, we called a timeout, drew up a faceoff play and were able to tie the game up with 1 second remaining on the clock. We went on to win the game in overtime, winning the ECAC west Championship.

MickeyLang2BB: What has your transition from the CHL to the ECHL been like?

ML: It’s  been pretty smooth so far, I think the margin of play is so small from one league to other that you just have to play hard and consistent every game regardless of what league your in.

BB: What were some of the difficulties with the Komets that led to your suspension?

ML: I think the suspension was a way for the Komets to have some time to make a fair trade that would be best for both them and I. It wasn’t a suspension because I broke a rule or did something I shouldn’t have done. It was just part of the process that was taking place.

BB: What are your pre-game rituals?

ML: I always tape up my sticks right when I get to the rink before a game, normally 2 hours before opening faceoff. After that I hang out with the guys, wait for coaches pre-game meeting, then I stretch and say a prayer before I put my gear on. Then it’s on ice warm-ups.

BB: It has been rumored that you were supposed to go to the Florida Everblades, what were the ultimate factors in your decision to play for the Orlando Solar Bears?

ML: I wasn’t sure where I was originally headed, I had an idea it would be in the southwest division. I know the Florida Everblades are a great organization but I’m very fortunate and happy to be in Orlando.

BB: What are some advantages and disadvantages to being a smaller player in the ECHL?

ML: I think being a bigger player you automatically have certain advantages such as your reach, ability to block shots, physical presence. As a smaller player you have to be quicker, play with a little more edge, and you have to play the game with your head and do a little more thinking. I wouldn’t mind playing one game as a 6’ 3” 225 lb. guy though!

BB: Who was you hockey idol growing up? Do you think your game now emulates them at all?MickeyLang

ML: I had a few idols growing up, I was a big New York Rangers fan so I really idolized guys like Brian Leetch, Adam Graves and I was also a big Theo Fleury fan. I tried to watch how they played but they were so great it’s hard to really emulate a lot of what they did, I try to take certain things from those guys and incorporate them into my game to the best of my ability.

BB: What is your favorite classic hockey movie and why? 

ML: I say Miracle because it was such a special moment for the United States and also one of the most improbable wins for a team that was able to knockoff such a dominant team in the Soviets.

BB: How would you describe your hockey career up until this point?

ML: Very blessed! I’ve been able to play with and against so many great players and have been teammates with a lot of guys that are some of my best friends. I’ve also seen almost the whole country because of hockey and met a lot of great people.

BB: What are a few of the best songs off of your workout playlist?

ML: I listen to everything from techno to rap and country. I have a lot of Eminem, 50 Cent and Bruce Springsteen on my workout and pregame playlist.

BB: If you didn’t play hockey, what other sport would you have liked to compete in?

ML: I would definitely choose baseball. I was a pretty good baseball player growing up and played until my senior year in high school, but knew my love was for hockey. My brother played professional baseball in the White Sox organization and my dad played college baseball, so baseball was big in my family growing up.

MickeyLang4BB: In your family who “likes” your sport the most? Why?

ML: My brother, he’s a big hockey fan and was a really good player growing up

BB: Who are some coaches that have had the biggest impact on you over the years?

ML: I’ve had some great coaches throughout my playing career.  Keith Levinthal, Dave Bell, Terry Ruskowski, have had a huge impact on me, but I know I wouldn’t be where I’m at without Erik Nates and Tim Turnbull. Erik Nates is the founder of Erik Nates Euro Hockey, which is a hockey school based in Westchester, New York. Training and working for Erik and Tim at Erik Nates Euro Hockey the past 7 years has given me the opportunity to play professionally and be successful.

BB: Hockey players are notoriously superstitious, any superstitions?

ML: I really don’t have any, only thing I do every single game is say a prayer on my way to the arena and during the American National Anthem.

BB: Do you think you could survive/win the Hunger Games?

ML: I don’t know much about the Hunger Games, but I think I could survive almost anywhere.


We really appreciate Mickey Lang taking the time to sit down and answer our questions. Mickey seems to be fitting in well with the Solar Bears and look forward to following him through the rest of this season in the AHL. You can follow him too, on twitter @mickeylang14.


(Photo Credit: YouTube Screenshot and Mickey Lang )

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