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Jared Cowen on his summer

by Chris Lund / Ottawa Senators

Jared Cowen spoke to the media after making an appearance at Sens Summer Camps at the Bell Sensplex on Wednesday. Here's what he had to say...

On his summer:

It has been long for sure. I've been here most of the time, Saskatoon a little bit and I was in Spokane where I played junior for four years for a couple of days to visit and play in a golf tournament there. I've been everywhere, taking advantage of the long offseason, travelling a bit. It has been nice — you don't ever want to have one of those long offseasons, but I've enjoyed it.

On the difference from last offseason:

Last year was weird, we only had half a summer to negotiate because we didn't know we had to. I'm just more comfortable this year, not that I didn't feel comfortable being here last year, but I have a house here now so it's a little more easy going to live here now and not so back-and-forth to Saskatoon. Just much more enjoyable.

On his training:

I'm just in the middle of it now because you still have until mid-September to start camp. You try to do a lot and then you remember you have so much time and don't want to burn yourself out. Everything is going well, it's just a matter of putting your work in and getting your reps going.

On moving past hip rehab and into standard training:

Anything I do is stuff I'm going to have to do for the rest of my life and anything anyone else should be doing too. It's nothing specific or rehab-like in that way, it's just stuff to keep me healthy, really.

On if the hip bothered him last season:

Yeah, it didn't bother me so much with pain but the hip effects everything and it's so important for hockey players. If it was tight it would effect something else in my body and I couldn't not worry about it and play, I always had to worry about that and make sure I was as healthy as I could be. It was always in the back of my mind.

On if it's easier to manage it now:

Every month that passes it should be easier. I went through the same thing with my knee. My knee didn't feel normal until two years later but I was younger then, it was a little more difficult. It actually helped me this time because I knew what to expect. The more time that passes the easier it gets.

On training for strength vs. training for mobility:

I haven't had to worry about getting bigger for a couple of years now so it's all just trying to be mobile for a big guy. With long limbs it's easier said than done, it's just a matter of choosing a certain regimen and sticking to it.

On the new-look roster:

It's interesting and not unexpected. I think we can be a better team this year. The guys I've talked to around the rink who are still around in the summer, we all have a pretty clear idea of what kind of team we can be. I think we also have the confidence that we can be that and not just say we are that team. I think everyone is on the same page so far from who I've spoken to and it's exciting to know we can take a step forward to where we want to be.

On the defensive emphasis:

Any team that I've been on that has been successful has had a concentration on defence. Defence is the key to winning anything, if you only worry about scoring goals you shoot yourself in the foot. If you can keep pucks out of your net you're going to score a couple on them too. I think that's what we were missing last year, the year before that and the lockout year we were focused on that mainly. I think we surprised a lot of people with how we performed with a lack of guys in the lineup. If we get back to that and stay healthy we should be a lot better than what we've been the last couple of years.

On if he has a guess as to the next captain:


On where wants to take his game:

I just want to be more dependable and play more minutes and if they ever need someone they can call my name and know I'll do the job. That starts with training camp and having the mindset that that's what you want to do. It's funny how it all works when you have a goal in your mind, things seem to fall in place. Having a good camp is key for everyone, especially for myself, and if I can do that it'll help me throughout the year.

On if he expected Spezza to leave:

It wasn't surprising, I'm around the guy every day, but it's not like he was telling everyone or it was obvious. I'm not surprised but I wasn't in on it or anything like that. It's good for him though, I think he's ready to go somewhere else and get a change of scenery and I think it'll be better for his career. Hopefully we're a better team for it. That's not to say he wasn't good for us, sometimes change is good and I think he'll do well there as well.

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