Brian, what ultimately swung your decision to Chicago?
They’re doing things that are making it known in Chicago and around the league that they want to win. That was a huge factor. The organization started to make the city take note and provide a lot of entertainment and something the fans could hold onto. I think that’s pretty exciting. I’ve been involved with that, especially in Buffalo the last couple of years. When you get a city behind you, things just go up and up. Did Dale Tallon have to sell you or your agent much on the team’s direction?
I think I was pretty aware of a lot of things. You hear about stuff and talk to people and learn more about the organization. For me it was reading about where the team is going. And I have a pretty good friend in the organization there I’ve known for a long time who I talked to today to learn more about it. How crazy was this day for you? Was it stressful, or more exciting to finally know where you were going?
The last month and a half was really stressful, then today was kind of just seeing what comes in and what teams are interested and making 100 percent sure that they’re interested. There were a lot of tough choices, and talks with a lot of good people that I’ve dealt with and who I hate to upset because I feel that I’m a pretty honest person that way. The people in San Jose especially have done really good things for me and have been first class in everything they do, so that was very tough to not go through with that. But I’m happy where I‘m at right now. I’m very excited. Should be a lot of fun. Dale has obviously discussed what you will add to the team with your skating and ability on the power play. How do you see your role with the club?
For me it’s going to be some leadership and it’s going to be an all-around thing. I don’t look at myself as an offensive defenseman anymore. I see myself as a complete player, so the work ethic is going to be there for me. I’ve been in too many situations and tough times where I’ve had to work hard to get my way out of it, and you learn from those things and those hard times stick with you through the good times. I’m really excited. I know there are a lot of great players in Chicago right now and I have somebody I’ll have to keep up with now in Duncan Keith
, which is not going to be an easy chore for myself. You touched on this, but how important was it to come to a team that you thought could win right away?
Very important. San Jose has that aspect going for themselves right now as well. But I fully expect big things next year in Chicago. There’s no reason why it can’t happen. We’ve got young players. The organization will have to stay on top of them and keep them working hard. I think it‘s the job of veteran players to help along the way. But there’s no reason we can't win right now. We don’t need to wait a year or two, we can go right now. We can do good things this season.