In hindsight, Stan Dzakhov would have taken extra language classes in English when he was growing up in Moscow.
But frankly, the freshman forward didn't have a lot of problems picking up the language when he came to North America in 2010 as a 17-year-old. Although there are some subtleties of the language he still doesn't fully grasp.
"Sometimes you just wish you understand more in the locker room," Dzakhov said. "Hockey was pretty easy. Even when coaches draw something on the board you don’t need to know what he’s talking about. You can just see it. You kinda know what he means.
"Just between guys in the locker room, jokes and stuff, sometimes I would get offended by jokes just because I don’t understand exactly what it means and I think it’s worse then it actually is. That’s probably the hardest part. But I think overall English, everybody says English is one of the hardest languages to learn but I probably disagree because it wasn’t terrible."
Catch up on Dzakhov's journey from Russia through juniors to Niagara in the holiday college hockey story from The Buffalo News.
Need more college hockey to get you through the rest of this winter break?
Take a look at the BN Rinkside galleries. Find out what you need to know from the first half of the season and take a glance at what some Western New York players are doing around men's Division I hockey this year.