Flyers forward Jakub Voracek held a conference call with the media today following the
announcement of his contract extension. Below is the transcript...
Q: Paul Holmgren said yesterday that they were close to signing you at the time and that you would be on the top line with Claude Giroux and Scott Hartnell...How does that make you feel?
"Obviously the season is long. I am very happy that the Flyers gave me an opportunity to play on a top line with [Claude Giroux] and [Scott Hartnell]. Like I said you never know what happens during the season. I just have to work hard and hopefully we are going to play great together. It is going to be up to [Peter Laviolette] what he is going to do with the lines. I am sure it is something good." Q: It seems like it took a while for them to get you resigned...Can you talk about what it was like waiting it out?
"Well, I was patient. We all knew what was going on with free agency and last week with what was going on with Shea Weber. If I was getting signed, I was getting signed. If I wasn't, I wasn't. I was patient and I knew I was going to get that opportunity to sign. That is exactly what happened yesterday. I am happy we agree on the terms of the deal and [I am] very happy to be locked up by the Flyers for the next four years." Q: The fact that you are possibly on the first line this year, are you looking forward, possibly, to some power play time and a more significant role overall with the team?
"I don't think I could get more power-play time than I did last year because I was on the top line with [Claude Giroux], [Scott Hartnell], [Wayne Simmonds] and Kimmo [Timonen]. I think it worked pretty well. The power-play time was very good. I would say since December, I played a lot of minutes for the team. I was getting more confident every game and every shift I took. I was very happy with my last year and with the way [Peter Laviolette] had trust in me. It was a big decision and I am very happy for that. I am very excited for a new year." Q: On scoring goals, improving his shot and what type of goals he can put up playing with Claude Giroux
"It is hard to say the numbers. I am always careful before the season starts saying what numbers I can put [up]. I always say my shot isn't bad; I think I have a good shot and a heavy shot. My accuracy isn't as good as it could be and I miss the net a lot when I am shooting. If I can hit the net more often, I think more goals are going to go in and the more points are going to come in. We will see...I am working on it. I still have two months to work on it and we will see what happens." Q: On Jaromir Jagr...
"It was very fun for me last year with all the players, especially [Jaromir Jagr]. He was practically my idol since I was a kid. To be around him all year long and to watch what he does before the games, after games and during practice was something priceless. It is good where he is at right now. He obviously helped me a lot and to be around him, I thank him for that and wish him the best of luck." Q: Did you talk to Jaromir Jagr while this was going on? Did you try to get him to come back?
"I talked to him a few times back home. He was waiting for what was going on in July and everybody knew the Flyers were pursuing [Zach] Parise and [Ryan] Suter. He was just waiting and he decided to sign with Dallas. I was always saying what is best for him and he always makes the right decision. When he felt that is the way he can get better and he can enjoy it, I am happy for him. Q: When the Flyers were offering big money to Parise were you wondering if he signed here what your place would be in the organization? Same thing with Weber. Were you wondering if this could force them to trade players and if players had to go to Nashville if you could be one of those guys? Were you following that all?
“You know I was reading some stuff on Twitter and some websites but like I said it's nothing that I can control and it wasn't in my hands. So if Parise, or Sutter, or Weber had signed in Philly we would have just kept on negotiating with Paul and see what happened but nothing happened like that so it's totally different right now and I'm happy to be a Flyer for the next four years.” Q: Is there any pressure with signing this four-year deal?
“Any pressure? Well, no not at all. I think the season I had last year was pretty successful and I know if I work hard, which is what I've been doing all Summer, I can get better and better. Hopefully I'll have better numbers next year and we'll be a better overall team than we were last year.” Q: Do you feel as if your game drastically improved when you joined the Flyers last year?
“Yeah, of course. The first 15 games I was getting used to the new style and the new system but since the beginning of November and December I began to get into my comfortable shoes and every game I was getting better and better. With the players that you have on the Flyers like Jaromir Jagr, Danny Briere, Kimmo Timonen, and really the whole team, I can say that I got better practicing with them and playing with them. I had a lot of fun last year and I'm very happy to be part of it again.” Q: You were in Montreal for some of the offseason, right? Have you been back there again working out?
“Yeah I'm here right now. It helped me last year and hopefully it's going to help me again this year and I can't wait for the season to start. Q: How disappointed were you that the Flyers were not able to land Shea Weber?
“Well, obviously he's a great defensemen in the NHL but you know you're going 50/50 on that when you make an offer sheet and that's exactly how the Flyers felt. Either or, it's going to work or if it doesn't we just move on and give it another try and that's exactly what happened. Obviously he would have been a big part of the team but life goes on, right?”
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