blank'/> THE PUCK REPORT: Jarome Iginla Interview - 2009 NHL Awards

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Jarome Iginla Interview - 2009 NHL Awards

Last week we met with the Calgary Flames' fearless leader Jarome Iginla at the NHL Awards in Las Vegas to discuss the recent firing of Mike Keenan. These are his stories.

Q: Tell me about the coaching change in Calgary?
A: It’s always hard to see a coaching change and we are definitely bearing responsibility. We’re all trying to reach our goals and unfortunately we didn't do that.

Q: As the captain do you feel any personal responsibility for the firing?
A: Oh absolutely. You look in the mirror at the end of the year, and as a group of veterans we do that, and look at areas we should have been better. One area that comes to mind is back to back games where we had a terrible record. Also, defensively we weren't nearly as strong as we have been in the past. We try to emphasize certain areas to improve on. So especially during the playoffs you watch different games and you keep thinking about our team and how you can improve. Once the season is over you look to next year and you can’t wait to get it going.

Q: How did Keenan’s criticism of Kiprusoff from the 2008 playoffs carryover to the next season, if at all?
A: They talked about it a lot over the summer and tried to work together and understand each other. But during the year it wasn't an issue. I think they talked over the summer numerous times but during the year it was good they both had a good relationship and definitely had mutual respect for each other.

Q: And your relationship with Keenan?
A: I really like Mike. I think he's a good coach. I think there were a lot of good things he did for our team. I was sorry to see him go. We didn’t finish where we wanted but some of our players had their best season. He helped me too with the Messier and Leetch stories from the winning days. As a veteran group we’re trying to learn how to get over that playoff hump and also just get better during the regular season.

Q: Finally, which player on the Canucks gets on your nerves the most?
A: I wouldn’t want to tell you. I wouldn’t want to, nope. None of them.

Many thanks to Jarome for speaking with us. Best of luck next season.