blank'/> THE PUCK REPORT: Jannik Hansen Interview - 2011 Stanley Cup Final

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Jannik Hansen Interview - 2011 Stanley Cup Final

After Game 1 of the 2011 Cup Final between the Vancouver Canucks and Boston Bruins, we spoke with Jannik Hansen who set up the game winner and became the first Danish player to skate in a Staney Cup Final. These are his stories.

Q: What’s been the biggest adjustment in your game since transitioning to the NHL?
A: Obviously you have to change quite a bit in order to fit in here. In the minors there was a little more powerplay. On this team it’s hard to get time on the powerplay and be the go-to-guy when you got quality guys like this, so it’s a matter of changing the style a little bit in order to fit in.

Q: I’m not sure what the Danish hockey stereotype is, but you certainly have a Canadian sensibility to your game.
A: Yeah. I think that’s from coming over earlier and playing in the Western Hockey League. It kind of forces you to play that way since it’s smaller ice and not a whole lot of room. Coaches here want to see you play that way so it was kind of a fairly simple adjustment for me.

Q: Coach Vigneault was saying that you piss guys off in practice sometimes because you never let up.
A: Yeah, we try to practice like we play. Obviously that’s one of the perks as well. So if guys are yelling at me, I know I had a good practice.

Q: Were you surprised to see your line on the ice with 30 seconds to play in a scoreless Stanley Cup Final game?

A: No, not really. We’ve been really good defensively and we’ve been able to roll three or four lines the whole season and playoffs. That’s one of our strengths. It doesn’t really matter who’s out there, it’s a matter of playing the right way out there. And you saw the benefit of rolling the lines today and keep coming at them from every angle and every line.

Q: Tell me about the hallway soccer game the Canucks play before a match.
A: Yeah, it’s two touch. You have to keep the ball in the air. Whoever loses it is out. It’s just a fun way to warm up. You can only ride the bike and run on the treadmill so much, it kind of gets boring. It’s something a lot of the guys enjoy.

Q: How long do you play the game?
A: We play, I would say, for 20 minutes a day or half an hour depending on how much time we have.

Q: Is that a European introduction to the NHL?
A: I don’t know. The Canadians like to do it too. I don’t know if it was brought over. It’s been that way since I got here.

Q: Who’s the best soccer player on the Canucks?
A: The Sedin twins. It seems like it doesn’t matter which sport, they’re just superior.

Q: Describe your daily routine for a 5pm Stanley Cup Final game.
A: Today I got up at 8am, had breakfast in the hotel room and came down to the rink for 9am.

Q: Did you work out this morning?
A: No, there was no workout today. I was just kind of hanging out. Then I went back to the hotel for a pregame meal around 1130am and took a nap from 12pm to 2pm. Then it’s back to the rink again for the warmup and the whole pregame ritual and video.

Q: Do you have a roommate in the hotel at this time of year?
A: Sometimes we do, sometimes we don’t. Normally my roommate is Andrew Alberts. We shared a room for the last game but I don’t know if they made a mistake or something because we had our own rooms for this game.

Q: Who controls the music in the Canucks dressing room?
A: Hamhuis has quite a bit of touch on that. He’s bringing out some good rock songs and keeps it going. Otherwise it’s just whoever’s got a feel for it. If you get tired of a song you just put on something else.

Q: How do you feel about some members of the media reporting that the Canucks are the most hated team in the NHL?
A: We couldn't care less about what other people think. It's about the guys in the room, the fans of the team, the family. That's what matters for us.

Many thanks to Jannik for speaking with us.