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Samsonov Eager For New Beginning

by Adam Kempenaar / Chicago Blackhawks catches up with newly-acquired winger Sergei Samsonov to discuss the trade from Montreal, his expectations for this season and more.

What was your reaction when you found out the Blackhawks were interested in acquiring you?

I was excited. Obviously last year was a tough year for me and I'm looking forward to being a Hawk. It's a great organization with a great tradition.

Now that some time has past, have you been able to pinpoint what went wrong in Montreal?

Not really. I haven't tried to think about what went wrong. I just want to put that behind me and get ready for the new season in Chicago.

Have you had much of a chance to talk yet with Dale Tallon or Denis Savard about their expectations for you this season?

We've just briefly talked so far; we haven't had long conversations -- more like welcome calls. I appreciated that, but we haven't talk about personal or team goals yet

What do you see as your personal and team goals for next season?

The team goal is always to compete to win a Stanley Cup. Ultimately, you have to put yourself in a position to be able to do that and making the playoffs is the start of that. I want to help them do that.

What are your feelings about being coached by Denis Savard?

Obviously he was a great offensive player and being a forward I want to come in and learn as much as possible from him. I'm sure he's got some tricks up his sleeve.

What makes you optimistic you can re-gain your scoring touch?

I want to have a clean sheet, and this is a great team to do it with. Expectations are going to be high for me and and the team and that's a good situation to be in. It's been a long summer and I've had plenty of time to get ready for the season mentally and physically.

Do you see yourself as a scorer or more of a playmaker who can setup a guy like Martin Havlat?

Well, if you look at my stats I'm probably more of a playmaker, but I like both. Obviously it's a good thing to have a guy like Havlat who is a natural goal scorer. It's important to have a balance. But I don't mind sharing the puck.

Do you have any connections to the current Hawk roster?

I played with Marty Lapointe for a few years in Boston. I know Nik Khabibulin a little bit, but I can't say that I've been able to follow the team much being in a different conference.

If things work out like you hope, is Chicago possibly a place you would want to re-sign when your contract is up at the end of the year?

Absolutely. Like I said, it's a team with a great tradition... Original Six. I look forward to getting to know the people and my new teammates.

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