During last season's work stoppage Ron Hainsey became the lead spokesman for NHL players. His candor pleased some and annoyed others but he always was there for a quote.
Now back on defense for the Carolina Hurricanes, Hainsey was hardly defensive when interviewed by our Rakhee Kulkarni about a variety of subjects. Ron's comments follow:
* HIS FLUKIEST GOAL -- SCORED AGAINST TORONTO EARLIER IN THE SEASON:
It was a lucky bounce, I was trying to make a pass up the wall and our player actually let it go, and it looked like it was going to be an icing. But our player beat their defenseman to the dot. Then it took a funny bounce off the wall and off the goalie’s skate.
I bounced a couple of other fluky ones. One was in Atlanta against St. Louis on Ty Conklin.
* DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CANADA AS A HOCKEY POWER COMPARED TO OTHERS:
Canada certainly has the most depth. They easily could field two Olympic teams, where most other countries can’t. There are great players now from everywhere. But the best player in the world is still a Canadian, Sidney Crosby, when he’s going.
But Malkin, who’s Russian, has won an MVP. My point is that in any given year, the best player can really be from anywhere.
* STATE OF THE NHL:
It’s good. With the cap going down, it has spread talent out even more, and parity is closer than ever. It seems like every week games are up for grabs in the third period.
The league is really close on a night-by-night basis, which makes life a little bit more difficult for the players.
* HINDSIGHT ABOUT THE LOCKOUT:
I’m sure there were things that could have been done better or differently. I plan on being long retired by the next time this might come up.