They may have a different approach to their coaching, but they work well together. Some people may be more concerned with their success at the club than they are with the team; others may want to get out of a losing streak. It’s really up to each individual player to work out their own strategy.
How do you keep things competitive?
It’s difficult this year. I love every single one of my teammates. They’re my family. I love every one of them. It’s tough to keep it that way in this league. In the regular season, I’d be pretty devastated if one of my guys got hurt or had to leave early. But it’s a tough league in part because it’s so hard to play well when you’re out there.
The most difficult thing for me this year: the games. I love that you’re out there trying to win. You don’t really care if you win, you just want to win! It’s the most fun I’ve ever had playing hockey. But you gotta deal with the pressure of losing.
You won’t play much this year if you don’t get through some games. Can you get through the rest of a home stand?
The season is going to be the same one that we’ve had for the last 10 years. The difference is you’re more involved. They’re a team that likes to go on the offensive and that’s the way we were able to make a couple really big plays against the Panthers. It’s hard to do that and still win when you’ve got guys like [Alex]ei Emelin and [Jason] Demers on the team. I think our team, especially over a 10-game series, will come up with a victory each night and I think we’ll do well.
You’re playing with Alex Galchenyuk again. Were you surprised by the success your teammate has had so far this year?
It’s a credit to him too. In the first year with [Erik] Laplante and [Ryan] Murray being good players, he’s played a lot of minutes. Now he’s the only real backup there, and he’s been real good. He’s got a lot of confidence on this team, and he gets up in the play. He has a great game even when he’s not playing a ton. But I think we’re all pretty good right now. I can’t wait to see how we go about it this year.
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