Yesterday, the Minnesota Wild acquired forward Sean Bergenheim from the Florida Panthers. Here's what Bergenheim, General Manager Chuck Fletcher and Head Coach Mike Yeo had to say about the acquisition.
Wild Forward Sean Bergenheim On being traded to the Minnesota Wild:
I was very very happy. I kind of expected something would happen before the trade deadline. I had kind of heard that Minnesota would be interested. I was very happy that they got the trade for me. I’m extremely happy and hopefully will bring a lot to the team. On his fellow Finns on the team:
I have some good friends on the team. In that way, I’ve followed them. With Mikko Koivu, I’ve played ever since I was a kid against him or with him on the national team, and often on the same line as him. With Mikael Granlund, I’ve practiced with him in the summer. I know Niklas Backstrom too.On whether or not he will make his Wild debut tomorrow in Nashville:
It’s completely up to them. I feel I’m ready. I want to play and I have a lot of energy to play. I want to help this team as soon as possible. But it’s not my decision, we’ll see what the coaches say tomorrow. On his style of play:
I try to bring a lot of energy on the forecheck. I try to create a lot of turnovers for myself and my linemates. I try to get the puck to the net and shoot a lot and try to score some goals. It’s a north-south game, I would call my game. I do like some good chemistry with my linemates too, try not only shoot the puck every time I get it. On the Wild's playoffs hopes:
I know, we only have one goal and that’s make the playoffs and after that anything is possible. I see this team has the potential to do great things. In that regards, I’m extremely happy to be joining the Minnesota Wild. On the excitement of playoff hockey:
When you’re a hockey player, the most fun is when you play a playoff game, by far. I’ve been there a few times and had a good run with Tampa Bay especially. It’s just so much fun those games because it seems like every single play you make on the ice is very, very important. Obviously in regular season it is also, but it is different in playoffs. At least I think that is the most fun when there’s so much on the line.
Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher
On making a trade prior to the deadline:
The sooner the better, obviously, no sense waiting until the deadline. Florida was willing to move him. Simply, looking for a guy with some experience, looking for depth. Right now, we have three forwards out and playing with 12 guys up front that are playing pretty well for us, but you get one or two more injuries and we’ll start really getting into some issues.
On what Sean Bergenheim brings to the Wild:
The emphasis for us was to find a proven guy, with some playoff experience, a guy that’s willing to compete, go to the net and pursue pucks. And Sean brings all those attributes.
He’s a hardworking guy, again a good forechecker, goes to the net. Plays a north-south game. There’s not a lot of fancy playing in his game. But he’s a guy that’s had a lot of success in the playoffs before and played pretty well for Tampa and Florida the last few years. Obviously brings some experience that will help us down the stretch here.
On the Wild's current goal and depth:
Our goal right now is to try to find a way to scratch and claw and get into the playoffs. Just another proven player, another NHL player with experience. The biggest thing over the next 23 games besides continuing to have great focus and playing hard every night is to make sure we have enough depth.
On whether or not the Wild will make any more trades prior to Monday's deadline:
If we can find something that makes sense we’ll do it. You always want to make sure you have enough depth. But we’ll see. We’re not interested in trading our first round pick or our top prospects. But if we can move lesser assets to improve our depth we’ll continue to look at it. Obviously, Sean was a significant acquisition for us, and certainly takes [off] a little pressure up front.
On holding on to top prospects:
The players that we’ve already drafted that have developed, our top prospects, we’d rather hold onto them — obviously a developed prospect is more valuable than a pick because they’re closer to playing. We were comfortable with the price and the pick is in 2016 so that’s another year down the road, and allowed us to keep another pick this year.
Wild Head Coach Mike Yeo
On what he thinks Bergenheim can bring to the team:
He’s a big body, and he’s going to hound pucks, which would fit into the way we want to play the game, with a great work ethic, goes well to the net. What I like is he’s good at both ends of the ice.
On where Bergenheim will fit into the lineup:
He’s got the ability because of the way that he plays responsibility because of his identity as a player, he’s got the ability to move from line to line.