has established himself in the National Hockey League as a gritty, physical defenseman with outstanding skating ability and the capability to chip in offensively.
The native of Sherbrooke, Quebec, posted a career high in assists a season ago with 17, and he led the Stars in hits with 197. He also solidified his place in Dallas’ core group of players, when he signed a three-year contract that will keep him in a Stars sweater through the completion of the 2009-10 season.
DallasStars.com recently had the opportunity to visit with Robidas to see how his summer has gone, get the lowdown on his summer workout routines and his goals for the upcoming season.DallasStars.com: What has your summer consisted of? Have you had a chance to do anything fun?Robidas:
“I’ve spent the summer in Quebec with my family and it has been great. We took a road trip to Boston for a weekend with some friends and we were lucky enough to go to a Red Sox game at Fenway Park. That was a lot of fun. We just took a three-day trip to Quebec City with some friends, where the guys played golf and the girls went for massages. It was a nice little relaxing getaway. I’ve been working out hard, in the gym and outside on the track. I’ve also been skating once a week in a league back home here with some guys who play in Europe and in the AHL and the NHL. It’s been a busy summer, but an enjoyable one.”DallasStars.com: What can you tell us about the lake house you are in the process of building in Quebec?Robidas:
“We’re building a house on a lake just outside my hometown. They are pouring the foundation in a few weeks, right before we leave for Dallas, and they’re going to build the whole thing during the winter. We spent this summer picking out all the things we want inside, so next summer, we’ll get to enjoy that. Hopefully it won’t be until late June though, after we make a good, long playoff run.” DallasStars.com: How intense are your summer workouts, and what routine do you follow?Robidas:
“I’ve been working out in the summers with a friend of mine since I turned pro, since I was 20. They’ve been really good for me, so I’ve stuck to that program. He sends me some new programs every three weeks and he explains everything to me. There are even pictures in the booklets that he sends me, so it’s pretty simple to follow. I go to see him a couple times during the summer and he shows me some new stuff. His name is Stephane Dube, and he used to work with Montreal when I played there. He was also with the Pittsburgh Penguins the last two years, but he just got let go. He’s always worked with guys in Quebec in the summer and there are a bunch of NHL guys who live up that way who work with him – J.S. Giguere, Andre Roy, Pascal Dupuis, J.P. Dumont, Joel Bouchard, Ian Laperriere. He’s a very well-known and well-respected guy.”DallasStars.com: Do you see the upcoming season as an opportunity to take your game to a higher level and take on more responsibility within the club?Robidas:
“I definitely see this season as a chance to keep improving. I’ve learned a lot the last couple years, so I’m trying to keep my game going upwards. I had a pretty good season last year, but I can do better and I want to do more. I want to get better everyday and I’m ready for a bigger responsibility. I want to be one of the players who steps his game up and I’m working out seriously this summer to be ready to go on the right track from day one.”DallasStars.com: Do you feel more established than you have in the past, since you signed a three-year contract with the Stars back in December?Robidas:
“My situation is different than it has been the last few years, when I didn’t know if I would be in the lineup or not. But my approach is the same as those years, it’s a battle and I’m going to battle to earn my spot in the lineup. That’s not going to change. I’m going to try to help the younger players coming in, and there’s a good veteran group of defensemen to lead with Norstrom, Boucher and Zubov.” DallasStars.com: How difficult was it to move on from last season’s playoff loss to Vancouver and what are your goals for the upcoming season?Robidas:
“I’m a big hockey fan so I watched the whole playoffs even though we lost in the first round. It was tough to shake off the frustration of losing because I thought we played well and we came back to even the series at three before losing Game 7. Losing in the first round is not up to the standards of the Dallas Stars, and as a player, it takes some time to forget about it and move on. It’s in the past now and I’m now looking forward to next season. We have one goal as a team, and that’s to win the Stanley Cup, and that’s where we’re aiming and what we’re preparing for.”