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04-14-2013, 02:36 PM
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Bryzgalov's Interview to (for Russians)

I translated the following from (for Russian speaking folks).

Unfortunately, I have not had much time to edit and proofread it (damn work). So, if there is anything that's lost in transation it's my fault.

I also understand, it might lead to inflammotory discussions. Please try to enjoy it at "face value"

Not an ordinary man
Anna Batugina’s interview with Iliya Bryzgalov for the Russian version of

AB: Flyers have been desperately fighting for a play-off spot, but not really successfully
IB: Nobody is going to give up. We will be battling till the end and will see what is going to happen.

AB: The team has lost 3 defenders and subsequently has lost 8/11 games. Was it the main reason?
IB: Injuries are not the only reason. We won 4 in a row recently without the same very players. One needs to look at the big picture on what’s going on with the team. Look at the schedule, opponents.

AB: Talking about the schedule. You must feel this intensity, since you started in 38 out 40 games.
IB: I really feel the difference. I am very tired. I felt mentally and physically empty before the game in Winnipeg. We started the game well, but made a lot of mistakes in the second period. Eventually, they cost us a game.

AB: The Flyers acquired a goalie at the trade deadline. Do you consider this as a challenge?
IB: I am not in the age to be afraid of competition. I do not meddle into these things; they are not of my concern. I have my own obligations to the club that I must honor. And I will fulfill them. As for the team composition, signing and trading players- these are general manager’s and coaching staff responsibilities.

AB: You are one of the most discussed personalities in hockey. You are always in a spot light of attention.
IB: To tell you the truth, perhaps people mistakenly think that I like this attention. I will open you a secret- I can’t stand being a center of attention. I am very domestic; most important things for me are my family and my home. I do not like being on TV or in front of cameras. I do not like crowded noisy parties. I am getting tired of crowds. I prefer a company of a few close friends, relatives in a warm home atmosphere.

AB: Last years “24/7” added enormous popularity to the team and you, particularly, for you extraordinary interviews.
IB: It seems to me that this is more interesting to people; rather than constant: “We have to prepare for a game tomorrow. It is very important to us.” They hear this every day. It’s boring. It can also be perceived as hockey players have no other interests in their lives besides hockey. But people are interested in us outside hockey as well- what kind of person you are, what interests you in life. Suppose, I am interested in the Universe, someone else may be an avid hunter. He can tell about that. Someone may be interested in building matchbox ships- anything. That is very interesting.

AB: Does your interest in philosophy help you with hockey? Goalies are considered to be loners. You have stated that you like to be alone, helps to gather your thoughts.
IB: No, not every goalie. It’s just me. I like to be alone. But a lot of people do not understand that, they want me to spend more time with the team, my partners. But I can’t force myself, I can’t fake it. I like privacy. I need my loneliness, my space to do what I like to do. I do not like when they try to make me; and afterwards tell me that I am a bad team player. No, I am not a bead team player, I do everything that I am asked on the ice; but please do not meddle with my private space. Because when one does it, it leads to conflicts. People are different. Everyone likes different things. That has to be accepted.

AB: Returning to philosophy, you authored the phrase:” in the end, hockey is just a game”.
IB: Correct, It’s my philosophical approach. We went on the ice and gave everything we could at that time. Other team beat us or we won. It will not turn the world upside down. You will simply get another title if you have won; it’s also not the end of the world if you have lost. You would feel bad for a few days, you would learn from it and you would move on. Move on forward. There a lot of things in life, besides hockey losses, that need our attention. If we dwell into things that we are not willing to look into frequently- hunger, wars, destruction, diseases and then look back on a win or loss…there is really nothing to talk about.

AB: But hockey is not really an entertainment for the players
IB: Of course not! It is hard physical labor. But it’s nothing comparing to my experience on the auto manufacturing plant.

AB: Can you share any details?
IB: I had my vocational training there. For almost nothing. I made $15 in 2 weeks. Every day I would come home and lay down, but my body would continue working. I would see an assembly line with my eyes closed. You work on it for an entire day performing some operations, and then lying in bed at night, you would continue working in your mind. And people work like that for their entire lives. It is the hardest labor, and they have to survive it. We also work hard, but we make good living off of it. We like our job, but sometimes we hate it because you get tired and completely drained.

AB: Let’s change the topic. Many people are interested in the story of your “Star Wars” helmet. How did you come up with this idea?
IB: I will tell you. I have had only one helmet and I needed a spare one. I asked the painter: “Could you please come up with something, please? I do not have any time or any ideas. Please offer me yours.” He had offered me several ideas, and I liked that one. Especially, since my son Vlad is a big fan of “Star Wars”. I also like anything space related. Also we have had some wars on ice between teams.

AB: You also have a lot of stars on the ice…
IB: Exactly! (laughs)

AB: What book are you reading now?
IB: I am re-reading “Idiot” by Dostoyevsky

AB: So you are a fan of classic literature
IB: Yes, I enjoy it a lot.

AB: What about movies?
IB: I watched a show about Russian civil war recently. Both sides had had their ideals and visions, but it’s terrifying how many lives were lost.

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