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Ducks Year-End Quotes

by Staff Writer / Anaheim Ducks

April 22, 2008

Watch players comments on video

On his thoughts with the season being over:
Well, there’s obviously not much you can do about it now. There’s a lot of things that we would have liked to have done differently throughout the course of that series, but somebody had to win and somebody has to lose. We were on the wrong end of it. It was a long year. Now we’ve got a little extra time here to prepare for next year and make sure that we regain that edge.

On the possibility of playing for Canada in the World Championships:
I don’t know. It’s two days afterward, so I don’t know what’s going to happen.

On Teemu and Scotty:
I try not to expect anything. That’s probably a better question for them. I don’t know what’s going to happen. I don’t know what changes will be made. I’m sure there will be some. There always is when you’re not as successful as you would have liked. Obviously, we would like them to come back, but as I said that’s probably a better question for them.

On Brian Burke:
There will be a lot of changes and it may not always be players. I think we’ve all heard those rumors for a long time now. Some I’m sure are made up and some may have some validity to them. He’s obviously meant a great deal. He’s molded this team into the way that he wanted on the ice and off the ice. He’s been an excellent steward of the game and an excellent GM to work for. He’s somebody that you can look at and know where you stand. That’s for sure because he’s going to let you know good or bad. You know what that’s nice in a sport where you’re kind of looked upon as a piece of meat and moved from team to team or position to position. It’s nice to have somebody like that looking out for you, but at the same time letting you know where you stand.

On Dallas:
We didn’t play to the potential we had I guess. We played a good hockey team. Dallas is a great team and we wish them the best now. We played pretty similar styles. They’re a pretty gritty team too that likes to get in there. You definitely see a little bit of a reflection.

On the possibility of playing for Canada in the World Championships:
Anytime you’re going to represent your country, I think that you’re going to jump at the opportunity, especially as a young player. I think it would be a great opportunity if I do get the call. I’d love to go play. We’ll find out in the next few days here. I’ll be excited to go. It’s nice not to have to go over to Russia or somewhere where you don’t really know anybody or anything that’s going on. It would be fun to play in front of the home crowd.

On Dallas:
They played better than we did. They were more desperate. They wanted to win more. We somehow didn’t find the energy or the willingness to compete to win in the first round. I think if you compare our team to the Dallas Stars, I think we compare very well. I think on paper we might have a better team, but they wanted it more. They were more focused on their task at hand. They had more energy than we did for some reason. As a group, we just failed to come up with the right answer. You have to move on. Life continues.

On the difficulties of repeating:
People just continually talk about repeating. It just gets in your head. I don’t think you should worry about repeating. You just try to worry about winning the next game and keep your focus that shorter. Just thinking about we got to win, we got to win, it’s just putting a lot of pressure on yourself. You don’t need to do that. That’s not how we won the first year. We won it by focusing on just one game at a time.

It’s disappointing. It’s definitely short of what our goals were. Right now, it’s a good time to take this, rest and forget about hockey for awhile. We played a lot of hockey in the last three years. Now, it’s a good time to rest and come out next year and be energized.

On playing three games after coming back from his injury:
It’s tough. It was a long six weeks I was out and a long recovery back. It was playoff time and you do everything you can to help your team.

On losing to Dallas:
It’s just unfortunate that we couldn’t get past Dallas and show everybody how special this team was and how good we could have been. It was kind of the same team here as the year before, just a few changes here and there. It could have been a different outcome. It’s a disappointing end to the season.

On whether he was pleased with his comeback:
What I was hoping for coming back was to go out and compete with the guys and have a chance for a Stanley Cup. We did have that chance, but we thought we could have done better as a team. You look around the room at the talent we have, and I’m sure there are other teams in the same situation. But obviously we couldn’t get it done.

On if he or the Ducks have set a timeframe for a retirement decision:
No. I haven’t really put anymore thought into it. I was asked a little bit over the last few days about that. I made the commitment this year. I was excited to come back. I truly enjoyed it, except for the outcome. I obviously will have to talk to different people and take it from there.

On Brian Burke:
It’s a pretty strange situation. He’s obviously under contract and all the speculation that there’s been around is different. I’ve never really been through anything like it before. People in Toronto are pretty excited about their hockey and they are looking for a general manger I suppose. We’ll wait and see what happens. I really don’t have any idea what will happen.

He did a good job here and I’m thankful for that. What plays out over the next little while, I really don’t know. I guess when things do happen, then I can make a comment, but right now I don’t know what’s going on.

On possibly playing for Canada in the World Championships:
I don’t know. I haven’t been asked, so I guess first you have to be asked. After that, I guess it would have to take a decision to be made.

On if the team lacked urgency down the stretch:
A little bit I do. There’s more to it than that though. If you can just go out there and work hard, that’s a big part of it. It’s a big ingredient to have success in hockey in the playoffs for sure. I don’t take anything from that. There’s more things. You have to build some confidence and have things running. You want to have everybody knowing what they’re doing without second guessing themselves. That just comes from working through things, having success and just building on it. We just never seemed to quite get there. We did for short periods, but we didn’t get there consistently. That sort of let us down a little bit.

On feeling more refreshed than last year:
No question. When you play six playoff games, it’s a lot different than two months of playoff intensity and the mental part of it as well, just being that intense for that long and that focused. We were not there long, so I feel fine.

This year was a shorter year for me. Right now, I feel quite good. Too good I guess, maybe I wasn’t playing hard enough.

On the “Stanley Cup Hangover”:
I just think it produces another challenge. You have to try and overcome what it means. It probably means a couple of things. The physical and mental toll that it takes, trying to recover from that when the season starts maybe before you’re quite ready to get back at it and then during the season to get back at that. Motivation for everybody is different. I would expect that once you have the experience of winning the Stanley Cup that you’d probably want to do it again because it’s pretty fun and rewarding, so I don’t think that becomes as much of a factor. I think it’s probably more being rested and mentally ready to get back to playing hockey day in and day out. That can be a challenge, especially if you’re not quite ready when camp starts and then things get rolling. It’s hard in mid-stream to get a hold of that.

On the early playoff exit:
Obviously we’re disappointed. I don’t think anyone expected us to lose in the first round. But that’s why this league is so tough. You never know. It’s a learning process with this team. I don’t think we were as hungry as we thought we were going to be. It’s disappointing, but what are you going to do? You move on, learn something and get better next time.

On the team not having the same drive as last year:
What happened last year affected us a little bit too. With what happened this year, I really started to appreciate last year’s effort. It felt like we were ready to do anything it took, and I don’t think we had the exact same feeling this year for some reason. Look back at how many teams have done it back to back. It’s so tough because inside you there is a little bit of that satisfaction that is always a little dangerous. I hope this team is going to be more hungry next year. We all have a bad taste about what happened in the playoffs.

On whether he will come back next year:
I don’t know about that yet. I was very happy to be back this season and I enjoyed coming here every day. I’ll just relax and think about things more a little later. But there is no way I’m going to do next year the same thing I did this year. I’m going to play the whole year, or I’m not going to play at all. But let’s see. 

On whether he’ll decide before the NHL Entry Draft on June 20 or the beginning of the free agency period on July 1:
I think it will be before that. Obviously I want to do what’s best for everybody. I don’t really feel I’m as exhausted as I was last year. It ended a little too soon this year.

I don’t really have a timetable, but I think it’s going to come before July 1st. I think that’s the best thing for everybody. Right now I’m just going to relax and see what happens. There is a chance I might go to the World Championships, but I haven’t decided on that either.

On coming back in mid-season:
Obviously, not skating for seven months, there ends up being a lot of work to do in the beginning. After about three weeks, I felt great. It was pretty much what I expected, and I really enjoyed being back. Obviously, with the teammates we have here it was so easy and so much fun to come back and spend time with these guys. That was a bonus for me.

On whether his body feels like he played only half a season:
It feels even less than that. In the playoffs, when you start really grinding, your body starts feeling really tired and there are more injuries and everything. Sometimes playoff time feels like more than a half-season. We didn’t really get that taste because we lost a little too soon. I knew it was very important for me to get that break that I took. It was almost like that lockout year, when I recharged my batteries and got my knee fixed and everything. I felt like a new player, and I think this break helped me like that too.

On whether that will help him with his decision to come back next year:
I think so. I really feel that there is a lot of juice left. That’s why I was disappointed that the season ended too soon. But I’m not thinking about next year too much yet. We won’t go that far.

On the possibility of Brian Burke being hired by Toronto:
The rumors are always rumors. Obviously what Brian Burke has done for this organization is unbelievable. The day he took this job, he took this franchise to another level. He’s done that in the past with other teams. He’s a winner and he’s a player’s GM. He’s going to do whatever it takes to make the players feel important. There is a lot of respect for that guy and hopefully he’s going to stay. But everybody needs new  challenges, and hopefully those challenges are here.

On the team possibly wearing down in the playoffs:
I think it was more mentally. After winning the Cup, everybody was just exhausted, both physically and mentally. I can only imagine how hard it was for the guys to start training camp and go to London. I think the schedule wore guys out. It was a nice experience to go to London, but in the long run it was a bad mistake. It’s one of those things where you have no choice. But, no excuses. Hopefully, this team learned something from this, what it takes to win. That’s why it’s so tough to win back to back. When you have that satisfaction inside you, maybe you’re not ready to pay the price for what it really takes. Even if you’re 5 percent off, you can’t win in this league.

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