Media day has wrapped up at United Center in Chicago. SB Nation covered the event, so head over to relive the coverage. Here's a breakdown:
- 5:48 PM: Paul Holmgren on the importance of the Ville Leino acquisition.
- 5:41 PM: Peter Laviolette talks about the adversity the Flyers have faced this season.
- 5:10 PM: A few Chicago players talk about the atmosphere on media day.
- 5:02 PM: Patrick Kane tries telling the media that he hasn't studied the Flyers yet.
- 4:46 PM: Peter Laviolette talks about Chicago's Dustin Byfuglien.
- 4:41 PM: A few photos from the event.
- 3:57 PM: Hawks GM Stan Bowman on the growth of Patrick Kane.
- 3:51 PM: Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville discusses Rocky Wirtz's impact on the franchise.
- 3:24 PM: An update on Andrew Ladd's status for Game 1.
After the jump, complete transcripts of media availability with Danny Briere, Simon Gagne, Jeff Carter, Mike Richards and Chris Pronger.
Q. How much do you expect to see of Campbell this year? I would imagine you might draw him.
DANNY BRIERE: To be honest, I didn't even think about that. Yeah, I'm sure they'll probably try to match up Seabrook against Richards; that would be my guess. So after Seabrook, it seems the next four kind of mix and match the way they play them.
So I wouldn't be surprised, yeah, to play against Brian.
Q. You were pretty close to him.
DANNY BRIERE: Yeah, we were good friends.
Q. I remember you talked a lot with him before you signed in Philly. Can you talk about that?
DANNY BRIERE: Yeah, we talked when it was his turn to ?? about the process of going through it, because he was kind of going through it the year after me. But this is the Finals. So at this time, just like the previous round with Montreal.
I was good friends with Spacek. And every time we would travel we were always sitting together on a plane, playing cards together. But if it's the Playoffs, you have to leave that friendship aside there for a little bit.
And I think everybody understands that part, too. We're so close to our goal, I do not expect Brian to back off in any way on me when I'm out there.
Q. I just talked to Hitchcock for a while. One of the things he said is the Flyers are going to scare the hell out of this team. He said they're not used to a team that they get up a couple of goals and come back on them. And he said this will be the first time they've seen an opponent probably since Nashville that's not afraid of them and will strike fear. Can you talk a little bit about that, just the psyche of this team?
DANNY BRIERE: Well, you know it's tough, because the tough part is we don't know them as well. It's kind of where I guess it's like that in every Finals. You don't really know much about the teams you're facing. You face them once, maybe twice a year. Obviously we know they have a good team and we respect that they have a good team.
But we can't give them too much respect. We still have to go out and get things done.
Q. Would you agree with his assessment, though, that you guys come at teams, you come back from any deficit, and it's a little bit different than other teams in the Playoffs. You're scoring a lot of goals and plays. Players, usually like one? or two?goal games.
DANNY BRIERE: I mean, I don't know. I think that would probably be a better question to ask them. I'm not sure that we strike fear in them.
Q. There was a time when this team couldn't score a goal to save its life, if I remember.
DANNY BRIERE: You're right, you're right. Coming down the stretch we gained a lot of confidence, and in the Playoffs.
I mean, that's one thing now, we do know that we can come back. And I remember there was stats, I think we finished close to last in the NHL when we fall behind, after a period, after two periods. I think we were last coming into the Playoffs or the bottom of the League anyway. And for some reason, you know, in the Playoffs it's been a total turnaround.
I think that goes back to the character of the team, the no?quit attitude that we've had since the Playoffs began. I don't expect us to back off from that at any point, no matter what happens from now on.
Q. I just want to know how the foot is feeling.
JEFF CARTER: It's feeling good. It's obviously a work in progress, every day. Even just walking around, it feels like it's getting better. Getting stronger as I skate every day. It's looking up.
Q. Would you categorize yourself as 100%. I know it's hard to say you're 100% now. Are you physically fit to go attribute everything you've done during the regular season?
JEFF CARTER: I think so. At this time of the year there's lot of guys that are playing through injuries, bumps and bruises and stuff like that. Something you have to put on the backburner. At the end of the day you have to go out and play hockey.
Q. Do you need to change ? does the team need to change their game at all when they go up against a better offensive team like the Chicago Blackhawks?
JEFF CARTER: They have a lot of skilled players there. A lot of guys that are dangerous offensively. I wouldn't say we need to change our game plan. I think we've been really good defensively the whole Playoffs.
But we definitely need to be on top of our game defensively. They have a lot of guys that can hurt you. We have to be ready.
Q. I was wondering when you first got hurt you probably wondered if your Playoffs were over or not?
JEFF CARTER: Yeah, I was told they were done. So to be honest with you, it was four weeks without putting pressure on my leg; was told the Playoffs were done. I wasn't rehabbing. I wasn't doing anything. I was just kind of hanging out, watching a few games and laying on the couch, and did absolutely nothing.
I got a call basically a week ago, I guess, from our trainer that there was a possibility that I might be able to start skating again. Next thing you know, I'm back in the lineup.
Q. It's kind of surreal, isn't it?
JEFF CARTER: It is. I was pretty down when they told me that I was pretty much done for the year. I was obviously really happy for the guys the way it's going. But it's tough to sit there and watch knowing you're not going to be able to get out there and watch. I'm definitely excited.
Q. It looked on TV like you jumped in with the same rhythm you had before.
JEFF CARTER: Yeah, I was actually surprised. I skated ? I had two full practices, I guess. Not even two practices. Two decent practices before I played Game 4 (against Montreal), I guess. I surprised myself with the way I felt. I tried to keep the shifts as short as possible and roam all over. The game in Philly, Game 5, I felt like I had an extra jump than did I in Game 4. I was happy with the way things went.
Q. I was talking to Dave Bolland when the Hawks were here. I don't know if you've seen what he's gotten under the skin of the Sharks and the Canucks pretty good. What do you expect from him in this series?
JEFF CARTER: I know Bolland really well. He played in London, and I'm from London. I got to know those guys a lot. He's doing a great job for them. …
He kind of gets in your skin. I watched the Sharks' series a bit, and he got under Joe’s (Thornton) skin quite a bit. That's what he's doing. He's doing a good job of it. You know we're going to have to keep our cool and just worry about playing hockey.
Q. There's been a lot of comparisons between you and Jonathan Toews. What was it like playing with him on Team Canada?
MIKE RICHARDS: He's a great player. He makes his line mates better, makes his teammates better, and I learned a lot from him at the Olympics. I enjoyed my time playing with him, and obviously he's having a great Playoff right now.
Q. Did you guys have a chance to become friends?
MIKE RICHARDS: Yeah, we're friends. Talk to each other a little bit. He's from Winnipeg, and I'm from Kenora, which is pretty close.
So we're friends now. We talk. But, obviously on the ice, you know, it will be a little different. We'll play hard against each other, but I think that's expected.
Q. What made that line click the way it did?
MIKE RICHARDS: I'm not sure. I mean, he's easy to play with. He makes, like I said, the linemates better and he's always in the right position. He's great defensively, and he's got great offensive skills.
So he's easy to play with, just supporting him. And I enjoyed my time with him.
Q. You see the similarities, we talk about similarities between the two of you, do you see them when you're actually playing, do you see something about him that maybe is in your game, too; do you see that?
MIKE RICHARDS: I don't really look for that when I watch him. But I'll take that as a complement, if you see that. He's a great player.
I mean, he's so tenacious on the puck. He works hard. He's a great offensive player, and I think just his competitive level on the ice, I think, is what makes him a great player.
Q. He talked about what he wanted to do in Olympics as far as the leaders in that room. Did you feel the same way, being captain of your own team and going there and seeing everybody, did you take a lot out of it as well?
MIKE RICHARDS: Yeah, I did. And it's funny how different people handle pressure situations, and that many leaders who have been in so many different situations to handle it differently, and you obviously grab some things; and Chris was there with me, kind of guiding me through a lot of it, too. It's nice to have those leaders around and somebody's who's been through it before to help you out.
Q. Comparisons with these two organizations, three years ago both last place in the division. What does it say about the league.
MIKE RICHARDS: I think if you look at the lineups are very similar in defense and come from a lot of draft picks and obviously a couple signings too. But I feel on paper we're very similar. So I think it's just going to come down to who plays the best the longest.
Q. You obviously played with Toews, do you think you'll get to play against him a lot? Do you think the match ups will go that way and if so how will you play?
MIKE RICHARDS: I'm not sure. I'll play him hard if he's matched up against us. They obviously have the last change. So we won't get to decide that. But I will see how the first couple games go, and then I guess we'll make adjustments when we get to Philadelphia.
But I'm sure, I mean, he understands and I understand it's going to be competitive out there, and we're probably going to play each other tough.
Q. What kind of impact do you think Chris Pronger has had on this team? He has a lot of experience in the Finals and won the Cup a few years ago.
SIMON GAGNE: I think Chris brings a lot to our team. He's a veteran. He played big minutes for us every night, and he had experience to be where we are right now, twice, actually.
He's been on both sides. So that's a plus, I think, for us. And for a guy like me, I've been in the league now for 10 years, I never had a chance to be here. It's all new for me.
And for most of our team, it's new. So having Chris around, if it's going to help us to know what to expect and definitely is going to help to have him on the ice.
Q. Has it sunk in you guys are in the Finals? The flight out here, anything like that, sink in that you're in the Stanley Cup?
SIMON GAGNE: I think it just started, just getting here, to see all the media, the attention, and having to do that, now have a special place for each player, could be here for 90 minutes and answer questions and stuff like that.
So you realize that we're here right now and we're getting closer to Game 1.
Q. Now that you guys are here, a lot has been made that you guys barely made the Playoffs, and we know what you guys have been through. Is it good enough just to be here, or is it still unfinished business?
SIMON GAGNE: It's unfinished business. Yeah, we are happy with what we accomplished so far. But we still want more. We want the big trophy at the end. And now, like I said the other day, we've got two weeks left in our season, basically. And so we just have to put everything out there. And now we've got plenty enough time after that for rest.
So we want the big trophy in the end, and that's what we're here for.
Q. Coaching change mid?season, guys injured, get into the Playoffs the last day of the season on a shoot?out, down 3?0 in the series. Has it sunk in what you guys have accomplished to get here?
SIMON GAGNE: It's hard to believe a little bit. But we're here right now. You know what, from day one at training camp even with John Stevens, we had to believe the team was good enough to be where we are today.
And unfortunately we didn't have the start we wanted. We had a coaching change, having Lavi brought in a new system, and it took us a while to learn what he was trying to bring for that team.
But at one point you kind of see that everything would start to click as a team with Peter Laviolette's system, with the coaching staff. And from there we start to play some good hockey. Went back into the Playoff race, and now took us right to the last game of the season, even shootout, to clinch a Playoff spot.
So it's amazing, if you think about it. But the whole time we believe that team was good enough to be here.
The transcripts were provided by the NHL.