• photo by Mike Stobe
  • photo by Joel Auerbach

My Favorite Things John Tavares of the New York Islanders shares the best things in life without ice

Food: Chicken Parmigiana. My teammate Matt Moulson is lucky because his wife is a great cook. I lived with him my first year with the Islanders and then I lived five steps away, so I was over there all the time for dinner.  Also, my mom’s home-cooked meals are favorites, especially BBQ sardines. It’s a Portuguese delicacy and one of her specialties. They are so good that I can eat 15 of them at a time.

City: New York City. There’s so much to do. I enjoy the energy of the city and other sports too. I’ve been to the Jets home opener and a few Yankee playoff games. New York always has a special buzz to it, particularly when Christmas comes around and everything is lit up.

Book: The Feeling of Greatness: The Moe Norman Story (since I’m a big golf fan) by Tim O’Connor and the Theo Fleury biography – Playing with Fire by Theo Fleury with Kirstie McLellan Day.

Quiet Place: My La-Z-Boy chair and a golf course. The chair is so comfortable and the course puts my mind at ease. It lets me enjoy what the world has to offer.

Band: Augustana and Eminem are my two favorite artists. I like a lot of variety in my music.  I’ll listen to Eminem before games and Augustana to relax.

Item to Collect: Watches and shades, because I like to collect things I enjoy wearing often. I have a few Prada sunglasses. I like my watches to be stylish but not too flashy. I want them to be simple and nice.

Charity: The Special Olympics. I’ve always had a soft spot for those great athletes and wonderful people. In high school, I took a class working with handicapped children and that was some of the most fun I’ve ever had, bringing smiles to their faces. I miss it to be honest with you. I think about those kids often.

Sport other than hockey: Lacrosse. My uncle (also named John Tavares) is the best to ever play the sport. They call him the Wayne Gretzky of lacrosse. He’s still playing for the Buffalo Bandits of the National Lacrosse League at age 43! He’s a remarkable athlete who had a huge impact on me growing up.

Guilty Pleasure: Pretty much all food. I really enjoy eating. And anything chocolate for my sweet tooth.

Movie: Avatar, Inception and anything with Will Ferrell in it. He’s too funny not to love.

Career Highlight: I’ve got a few that all hold special significance to me. The two world junior gold medals I won with Team Canada, being the first pick in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. And my first goal in the NHL. All those moments are dreams come true.

TV Show: I enjoy Family Guy for comedy. Same with Californication.

Gadget: My iPad, it’s a must when I travel or leave my house. I use it for everything— music games, email and watching my tv shows. It’s definitely my all-in-one.

Karaoke Song: Probably Good Riddance (Time of Your Life) by Green Day. It’s pretty easy (laughs).

Thing to do with Friends: I like to golf, socialize and travel with my friends. Traveling is something I need to do more of with them. I have a great entourage of buddies and we do a lot together. We hang out and eat together, go to the movies and enjoy time in the summer when we get to see each other. It’s always an adventure, that’s for sure. And of course, I’m happy to have them come down from Ontario to Long Island for games at Nassau Coliseum.

Vacation Destination: Anywhere with a beach, sun and many golf courses. I’d like to visit California and play Pebble Beach someday. That’s at the top of my list.