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Round 2
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Stanley Cup Final

Dan Craig, folks, he'll be here all week

Monday, 12.27.2010 / 5:35 PM

By Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer / 2011 Winter Classic Blog

PITTSBURGH -- To get an idea of how good Dan Craig is feeling right now, you had to only listen to him at his media briefing on Monday afternoon.

Nearly all of the questions aimied at him and Don Renzulli at Monday afternoon's press briefing were about the inclement weather expected for New Year's Day, but Craig was a one-man show, cracking jokes and looking for laughs as he attempted to lighten the mood.

The first question he got was about that predicted rain. How does it affect his ice?

"It makes it very slick," Craig cracked.

Nobody was sure if he was serious or joking.

"What, you guys don't like jokes?" Craig added. "It's been a long 55 hours here people. Come on, help me out."

What if it does rain?

"We're going to take off the skates, put on curling shoes and we've got some stones," Craig said. "We'll do this other Canadian game."

Finally, I asked him how his team can be so ahead of schedule knowing they worked over the holiday, so they were slightly short staffed and they had to deal with wind and some snow?

"Smoke and mirrors," Craig said before lauding the crew in a serious fashion. "You never know what Mother Nature is going to do to you and you prepare that somewhere along the line you have to back down for four or five hours. That's built into the schedule, and we did not have to back down in our first 36 hours. We didn't have to back up at all. Everybody just went steady."

He's in a good mood, folks, and that means everyone here is in a good mood because if Dan is sour, you know it ain't lookin' good.

Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at: @drosennhl

Once again, it shows character in this dressing room. Once again, there's no quitting in here. We all wanted this so bad and we worked so hard to get home-ice advantage and we weren't going to let this one slide.

— Colorado Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog on his team's OT Game 1 win vs. Minnesota Wild