Monday, March 28, 2011

DCLS Exclusive Eric Fehr Interview - Part 2: Matt Cooke and Picking a Fight

mIn case you missed part 1 of our interview with Eric Fehr of the Washington Capitals, well it's right below this article on our site, but here is the link. Regardless, here is the 2nd installment of the interview, with Eric telling all about teammates past and present.

Jon Kelman: What did you think of Matt Cooke's hit and suspension?
Eric Fehr: I really didn't like the hit and thought the suspension was good. You know it's one thing if it's the first time a guy's done that, but because he's a repeat offender I think it's good they gave him a bunch of games.

JK: How would you feel playing with Cooke now?
EF: It's different when you have a player like that on your team as long as he's staying out of the box and creating energy for your team, but when you're taking dumb penalties and putting your team in a bad situation, you don't want that. He did a pretty good job for our team when he played here. You know it's tough to keep those guys out of the box, but there's definitely a use for guys like that if you can keep them contained. I think you have to give everyone a fair shake. You look at guys around the league and there's a lot of hatred for guys like that, but when they're on your team maybe they're good players so you have to give them all the benefit of the doubt.

JK: If you could fight one player in the league, who would it be?
EF: I dunno, I'm not really a fighter so I can't really say anything because I might end up getting beatup or something. I'm trying to think of somebody I think I could take but I don't want to throw out a bad challenge. It's a real lose-lose situation for me, I'm a big guy so if I fight a big guy and get beatup I lose, but if I fight a little guy and beat him up, it looks bad. So, I would have to go after a pretty big guy if I wanted to fight someone.

JK: Who are your favorite guys to play with?
EF: I enjoy playing with Jason Chimera just because he is so fast and he's a good physical player. I would really like to play with Nick Backstrom one day, he's a really good playmaker and controls the puck so well.

JK: What has Jason Arnott done behind the scenes as a leader?
EF: I just think he's brought a lot of maturity to the room. He's done a great job of making sure guys are doing the right things and following the team system. If I step out of it, he's right there to remind me of what I need to do, and he's not shy to do it, which is what is needed in that case. He's not there to embarrass anybody, he's just there to help guys along and help guys make good decisions. It's more of a 1-on-1 thing off to the side where he's not making a big show in front of everybody. He wants to help everybody out on the team as individuals, so it's more of a 1-on-1 thing.

JK: Is Arnott the definitive leader in the locker room now?
EF: Well we've got a few guys, Knuble, Hannan, and Arnott are all good leaders in the room right now.

JK: When Knuble was brought it, a lot of people saw it as a guy you could learn from and possibly be the type of player you could grow into some day. What have you learned from him?
EF: Yeah, he's definitely helped me. I've learned from him about working the corners and making the simple play. It's better for guys like us who are more shooters and play in front of the net to not take too many risks and get the puck off our stick to guys that can make plays.

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