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Sidney Crosby Olympic Question and Answer Session

by Staff Writer / Pittsburgh Penguins
Below is the transcription from Sidney Crosby's question and answer session with reporters on being selected to the 2010 Canadian Olympic team:

Sidney Crosby

On getting the call:
Yeah, it was pretty exciting. We were in a meeting so I actually missed the first call. I was happy to get it. I am very excited.

On whether there was a lot said during that call:
No, not a lot. I am sure things are pretty busy. It was just congratulations and they told me I was on the team. They said people would be in touch. It was really nice to get that call.

On making the team:
It’s great. From here on in it is going to be a pretty popular subject – not that it hasn’t been already. To be able to put faces on the team I think everyone is getting more and more excited for it. I think this is just kind of the next step in that process. It’s going to be pretty neat to see the amount of talent and skilled players that are going to be a part of that group.

On being a leader for the young Canadians who make the team:
I think you always want to lead by example. You try to use your experiences as best as you can to kind of prepare you. I think for any of the younger guys, we have some pretty unbelievable leaders in that room. You look at the (Scott) Niedermayer’s, the (Jarome) Iginla’s and (Chris) Pronger. These guys have been through a lot of these situations so we can learn a lot from them. I think as a younger player you try to lead with your game. That is the best way you can. You know you haven’t been through an Olympics like these guys have. They know what to expect and how to prepare for it. I think a lot of us will be following the great example they have.

On having fun:
You have to. It’s an exciting time and certainly there is pressure but I think that is something, whether it is playing for Team Canada or any other team, I’ve dealt with. That is what you deal with in those situations but that is also why you love to play the game and those are the challenges you look forward to. There is no doubt that people have high expectations of Canada but it has always been that way. That is what we have gotten used to and it is because people care. That is not a terrible thing. As players you get used to that. But yeah you enjoy it and you do your best to meet those expectations.

On Steve Yzerman placing the call to him:
Yeah, so that was someone I grew up watching a lot. He was a role model for me. To receive the call from him was pretty special.

On what being the captain would mean to him:
No. It’s an honor to be on the team. That is the main thing. I said it before but there are a lot of guys who are more than capable of being the captain. I don’t look at myself as being the captain. I don’t see that happening. There are so many guys who have played in a lot of Olympics and more Stanley Cup Finals and things like that. We have a lot of experience. I don’t see that happening.

On seeing the gold medal before:

On not seeing Mario Lemieux’s gold medal:
No. I haven’t seen it. Hopefully I get a chance to get one.

On whether that is by design or superstition:
I just haven’t. I know that he has one but I didn’t ask to see it.

On wearing the Canadian colors in the Olympic Games:
This is very special and something that again you grow up (wanting). I remember watching in Salt Lake and wanting to be a part of the Olympics. It is more than just hockey you are talking about. It is a celebration of sports throughout the world. You are talking about representing Canada and being a hockey player in a sport that is so important in Canada and having the Games in Canada so I feel pretty lucky to have that opportunity. That’s the way I see it.

On potential trash talking between him and Evgeni Malkin:
None. It’s probably something we don’t even want to joke about because we realize the rivalry there. It is way beyond me and him and it goes back way before him and I were even born. Maybe as we get closer there is a little bit but honestly I think we both realize that is a pretty intense rivalry. Nothing really needs to be said. We both know where that stands. I don’t think it is something that is going to be discussed a whole lot.

On not being able to understand Malkin:
Not all of it anyway, but he probably likes it better that way.

On being proud to be a Canadian:
Yeah, I always am but definitely today is special. Like I said you dream of this so to get that call is pretty amazing.

On everything he has accomplished in only five years as a professional:
I just feel lucky to be honest with you. There is no doubt that I have worked hard. I know I have. But there are a lot of guys who have worked hard their first five years in the league and they haven’t had the luck of having that happen to them. I feel pretty fortunate. I am obviously proud but I feel fortunate and lucky to have these opportunities at a young age. There are a lot of guys who have worked just as hard and maybe haven’t had those things happen to them. It’s nice but I don’t think about those things a whole lot. It’s something hopefully when it is all said and done it will be nice to look back. I think you are always looking ahead at what you can try to accomplish.

On what he expects the next month with the core of the Penguins all competing in the Games:

I think it’s important to just worry about what we have to do here. That’s the best way to handle things. As long as you are focusing on your game here and getting it where it needs to be hopefully that is going to help our team. Guys are going to be making sure they are at their best. I think this is something we have all dealt with in different scenarios. You learn how to handle that and how to approach it. Guys are all pretty mature like that so I don’t really see that being a distraction or anything that should change anything.

Click here for comments from Crosby's coaches and teammates regarding his selection to the Canadian Olympic team in Wednesday's Penguins Report.
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