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Summer Interview with Vanek

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Old
07-03-2012, 05:39 PM
  #1
Luceni
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Summer Interview with Vanek

Didn't see anyoe posting it here, so I thought you might find it interesting:

Vanek updated his official homepage with a interview:

Quote:
ďCouldnít get out of the downward spiralĒ

We met Thomas Vanek during his holiday in Austria. Here you can read what he has to say about the last season and how serious a possible lockout for next season is. And: Would Thomas play in Austria if there was a lockout?

Question: What are your feelings about missing the playoffs with a few months gone?
Vanek: It still hurts. Weíd have had a fighting chance to win the Stanley Cup if we at least had made the playoffs. Just look at L.A. They got in as the eighth seed, the same position we could have had. It hurts so much that we didnít even give ourselves that chance.

Question: Can you already feel the tension building up for the new season?
Vanek: Whenever you donít reach your targets and you had some weeks to think about it youíre already straining at the leash to get back to playing.

Question: You already were in the playoff-spots but lost that place again. Did you run out of gas?
Vanek: I donít think so. We were fighting hard for the final 25 games and were feeling good but it just wasnít enough. We won a lot, but not enough.

Question: What were the reasons?
Vanek: We lost 10 games in a row in January and thatís what makes the difference. To overcome such a deficit is anything but easy.

Question: What happened back in January?
Vanek: It was a downward spiral, even though we had some good games but just couldnít grind out the win. The deeper you get into that spiral the more difficult it becomes to get out again. The other teams know that, too, and capitalize on that.

Question: What did the Kings do better in the end?
Vanek: Well, they were in a similar position than we were, but the slipped in as the eighth seed. In the playoffs they showed a very steady effort, each line scored and thatís something you need in the post-season. You canít just hope that two or three guys will bail you out offensively. Also, they were good defensively and they had a great goaltender in Quick.

Question: The Sabres first carved after that infamous Lucic-Miller incident. The media and the fans criticized the team very harshly after that. How much did that gnaw at the team?
Vanek: We didnít take it that hard in the locker room. The media always write what they want, we canít change or influence that. I personally donít care at all. What bothered us most was that Ryan got hurt by that hit and it took him 20 or 25 games to get back to his full strength and rhythm. If your number 1 goalie isnít playing up to his abilities it gets hard for the team.

Question: You started your catch-up race once again after the All Star-break. What makes the Sabres so strong in the second part of the regular season? Is it the conditioning, can you just flip a switch in your head?
Vanek: Physically weíre all definitely in a good shape. But the most important fact was that we were all healthy, finally. Especially Ryan who played phenomenal down the stretch. To get that tremendous goalie back is so important, even though hockey is a team-sport. Itís not so important how good your forwards or defensemen ar. Of course, they can win you a game here or there, but to get on a roll like we did you need a great goalie.

Question: The best example therefore would be your west coast trip, where you won some crucial and close games.
Vanek: Yes, it was there that we were convinced that Ryan was back to that level where he usually plays. Iíve been playing with Ryan for 8 years now and I always said that he is one of the five best goalies in the world for me. If Ryan is on his game, everybody in front of him is more relaxed and plays better, because we know that he will bail us out if we make a mistake.

Question: Over the final stretch of the season you played with Cody Hodgson as center. Whatís your first impression of him?
Vanek: Great! When we played together we both found our game again. We got along very well on and off the ice. He is a center who can dish the puck to both sides and who reads the game very well. He is just a great player.

Question: Buffalo finally got their two, big centers at the draft with Grigorenko and Girgenson. Whatís your take on that?
Vanek: They seem to be good players as much as Iíve heard or read. Iím sure the team has drafted according to what our needs are. So I guess that this was a good to great draft for us. Now we can only hope that the young players develop the way they are projected to do.

Question: Are you looking forward to playing with them in training camp in the fall?
Vanek: Definitely! I can still remember my first training camp. It was such fun to get to meet the older players and learn from them. Every year Iím looking forward to the start of training camp to meet the new, young players and I gladly help them out with advice if they want it. Training camp is just a good time for the whole team.

Question: You started last season really strong but fell into a hole later on. What happened?
Vanek: Thatís hard to say. I played a lot with Jason Pominville in the first half of the season and we had good chemistry. Also with Luke Adam for the first 20 or so games. Then the lines got shuffled around and it wasnít that easy anymore. I still have to work on my consistency, well, we all have to get better in that respect.

Question: How can you improve consistency in the summer? Is it more a physical or a mental challenge?
Vanek: I donít think itís physical. In the years before I often started out slowly and got hot later on, so Iím sure itís got nothing to do with my summer work-out. I have to stay positive. I think I tried too hard to get us out of that hole alone when we strung together all those losses in January. The harder you try, the less things work out. I got myself into a negative mood and couldnít get out of that for a long time.

Question: But thatís over now?
Vanek: Yeah, it has to! If you fail, you have to keep on learning and try to make it better the next time.

Question: What about injuries? Any lingering aftereffects from last season?
Vanek: No, Iím feeling completely fine and ready to go. Iíve been working out for the last 2 months already and I hope to stay healthy for the rest of the summer.

Question: What are your plans for the rest of the summer? Any new plans for your work out?
Vanek: Iím working out the same way I did the last two summers. I always felt good coming into training camp and Iím sure Iíll show up in great condition in Buffalo in the fall.

Question: You only have two years left on your contract with the Sabres. Any fear that you could get traded before the end of your contract? How do you cope with a situation where you have virtually no influence on your situation?
Vanek: I donít really think about that too much. If it happens than I have to deal with it like a pro because you canít really change anything. Anyway, Iím convinced that Iíll stay in Buffalo until the end of my contract and I still want to win the Cup with the Sabres.

Question: There is still no new CBA. Are you afraid of a new lock-out?
Vanek: I guess right now anything can happen. The players have met a few times and weíve already discussed what we want to have in the new CBA. There will be more talks with the league over the course of the summer. We really hope that we can get an agreement with the NHL and that there wonít be any games missed. The league is doing fine right now, so that shouldnít be a problem at all. But, of course, itís a business and negotiations are just a part of that. So, yes, itís possible that the season might not start as planned.

Question: In case there really is a new lock-out, would you consider playing in Europe or would you spend more time with your family?
Vanek: I really donít know right now, weíre bound to our teams until September 15. What happens afterwardsÖ Iíll probably stay at home, getting a lot of practice and play some golf.

Question: Graz could use a forwardÖ
Vanek: I donít think I would play in Graz (laughs).

Question: Sabres legend Rick Jeannerett has just extended his contract for another year. Is this an extra motivation for the players to win it all next season?
Vanek: I think itís great Ė for the fans and for us. Everybody who watches our games gets motivated by Rick. A lot of people, including my friends, tell me that. I really like him and get along with him very well. Heís very close to the team, he travels with us and is just always there. I think itís great that heíll be doing all 82 games this year.

Question: Terry Pegula has now finished his first whole year as the Sabres new owner. Have you got a lot to do with him?
Vanek: Not so much, but heís done all the things he promised to do. He said he wanted to make the Sabres a big family and now thereís really a big difference to the years before. For example, we have a lot more get-togethers for all the playersí families and a lot of other things. So, Terry Pegula has already done much good for the club.

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07-04-2012, 02:36 AM
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Rob Paxon
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I hope he and Hodgson light it up this year and he stays relatively injury free. I've got a good feeling about that combo.

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07-04-2012, 03:01 AM
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LFDM
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"Iím convinced that Iíll stay in Buffalo until the end of my contract"

ok, i know i'm reading too much into that, but you can phrase that differently if your determined to sign another contract in Buffalo...

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07-04-2012, 03:13 AM
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Rob Paxon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LFDM View Post
"Iím convinced that Iíll stay in Buffalo until the end of my contract"

ok, i know i'm reading too much into that, but you can phrase that differently if your determined to sign another contract in Buffalo...
I think he was just answering within the parameters of the question which were about being traded as his contract winded down. I did furl my eyebrow a bit, but I think that's all there is to it. Plus I assume the interview was conducted in German and translated.

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07-04-2012, 06:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Paxon View Post
I think he was just answering within the parameters of the question which were about being traded as his contract winded down. I did furl my eyebrow a bit, but I think that's all there is to it. Plus I assume the interview was conducted in German and translated.
you are right.

the german version about getting traded:

Quote:
Vanek: Mich stŲrt das nicht, ich denke da aber auch gar nicht viel darŁber nach. Wenn es passiert, dann passiert es und man kann sowieso nichts dagegen machen. Wenn ich in Buffalo bleiben darf, wovon ich eigentlich Łberzeugt bin, dann werde ich weiterhin mein Bestes geben. Ich mŲchte ja endlich den Cup gewinnen.
which i would translate to:

Vanek: "This does not bother me, I really do not think about that. If it happens then it happens and you can not do anything against that. If i may stay in Buffalo, of which i am convinced, then I will continue to give my best. I want to finally win the cup."


so i have no idea, why they add the "until the end of my contract" in that sentence.

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07-04-2012, 06:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by koarl View Post
you are right.

the german version about getting traded:



which i would translate to:

Vanek: "This does not bother me, I really do not think about that. If it happens then it happens and you can not do anything against that. If i may stay in Buffalo, of which i am convinced, then I will continue to give my best. I want to finally win the cup."


so i have no idea, why they add the "until the end of my contract" in that sentence.
Yep, i was going to check that myself. Strange translation indeed.

To clarify it further: i am not totally sure how the english phrase "if i may" is used and if that's a 100% correct translation. "Wenn ich in Buffalo bleiben darf" is meant in they way of "if i am allowed to stay in buffalo". Does "if i may" reflect this? I welcome your help

And to close this: if someone really wants to read something into his words, he might be saying the exact opposite of what i proposed in my last post: that he wants to stay here!

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07-04-2012, 07:02 AM
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Booo he's not going to play for the 99ers if there's a lockout.

booo

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07-04-2012, 07:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Duddy View Post
Booo he's not going to play for the 99ers if there's a lockout.

booo
but ATSE Graz maybe?

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07-04-2012, 08:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LFDM View Post
Yep, i was going to check that myself. Strange translation indeed.

To clarify it further: i am not totally sure how the english phrase "if i may" is used and if that's a 100% correct translation. "Wenn ich in Buffalo bleiben darf" is meant in they way of "if i am allowed to stay in buffalo". Does "if i may" reflect this? I welcome your help

And to close this: if someone really wants to read something into his words, he might be saying the exact opposite of what i proposed in my last post: that he wants to stay here!
I think "if I'm allowed" is a better translation and also accurately conveys the meaning. "If I may" conveys the sentiment just as accurately but I think would be less concise to most ears as we tend to use "may" rather loosely in America.

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07-04-2012, 09:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Paxon View Post
I think "if I'm allowed" is a better translation and also accurately conveys the meaning. "If I may" conveys the sentiment just as accurately but I think would be less concise to most ears as we tend to use "may" rather loosely in America.
Alright, thanks Rob! That's just how I expected it to be.

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07-04-2012, 10:28 AM
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feels like a little austrian pick-nick here...

it would be great if he could stay in buffalo, i could even imagine him signing a cap friendly "retirement contract" here (5.5-6M?). he fits very well with town and the club, and imho he is still able to become the best sniper in the game.

unrelated; it's absolutely frighning what slightly different translations can do to the meaning of a sentence....

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07-04-2012, 11:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ceky View Post
unrelated; it's absolutely frighning what slightly different translations can do to the meaning of a sentence....
english-russian-arabic-malay-yiddish-gaelic-english

"Significant, and it is very alarming translations can be done different to make sense of the proposal"

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07-04-2012, 11:53 AM
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I'm pretty excited with his reaction to the CoHo question. I hope they have some awesome chemistry this season (if ruff allows them on the same line anyways)

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07-04-2012, 09:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ceky View Post
feels like a little austrian pick-nick here...

it would be great if he could stay in buffalo, i could even imagine him signing a cap friendly "retirement contract" here (5.5-6M?). he fits very well with town and the club, and imho he is still able to become the best sniper in the game.

unrelated; it's absolutely frighning what slightly different translations can do to the meaning of a sentence....
That's something totalitarian governments like the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany really excelled at doing, you can be misleading without having to outright lie (not that they didn't do that as well).

Somewhere I have a book that dissects propaganda from the early-mid 20th century, really interesting stuff.

Regarding Vanek, I do think there's a good chance we can resign him to the kind of contract you mentioned, however I wouldn't be surprised if he goes "home" to Minnesota. They'll have some darn good players with Parise, Suter, Koivu, and Granlund.

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07-04-2012, 09:17 PM
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Cue the spinsters about the Quick being a good goaltender comment.

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