Happy Sasha. (Photo credit: @megab23)
Ahead of tonight’s reunion game against the Caps, Alex Semin sat down with Carolina Hurricanes color guy Tripp Tracy for a two-part English interview. It’s totally awkward.
For those worrying Tripp would nail Semin with incisive, hard-hitting questions like “Are your shoes comfortable?“, you may now relax. Instead, Tracy tossed up softballs like “What do you think of your teammates?” and “Do you enjoy Carolina?”
Hey, you guys don’t think there was any collusion between Tracy and Carolina PR following Troy Brouwer’s unkind words, do you? Naw! Tracy probably came up with “your teammates are clearly the most important relationship to you” all on his own.
Alex, I know it’s been a few games, but boy does that jersey look good on you. And I think that’s a perfect place to start. How have you enjoyed Carolina?
In Carolina? I like in Carolina. Everybody support me. I like fans in this area. Everyone is good.
In watching you, your teammates are clearly the most important relationship to you. They have loved you. Talk to me about getting to know your teammates.
[Odd noise that sounds like Ahhh] I say before. Everybody support me and help me. Doesn’t matter where on the ice. Off ice. When we’re on the road, guys tell me go with us for dinner. I like these guys.
I want to ask you about one guy in particular. As soon as we landed in Washington, Eric Staal — your captain, your linemate — he sent me a message that said “I’m so excited. I wanna win this game for Alex.” He’s enjoyed you so much. Talk about getting to know him.
I’m very excited too to be stay here. Cuz I play before heres seven years. It’s very important for me this game tonight. I wanna wins this game too.
What have you liked most about Eric?
He’s good guy. He support me every time on ice. He’s well spent. He wants to pass it to me. I like play here.
I want to get to know you a little bit. Your relationship with your father who was a great player in his day. He was a forward like you. I believe he was your coach. Can you tell us a little about your dad?
Yeah. He’s good player when he was younger. He support me every time. No [laughs] he suggest me every time. Sometimes after a game, I call him and we talk about a game when I play well, when I play bad. So we talk to after game [about] how I play. He… help me. [nods]
You must stay up pretty late with the time-change in Krasnoyarsk.
It’s 13 hours.
[I stay up until] 11, 10 PM.
Anybody that watches you says “Man, he’s a smart hockey player.” Does that come from your dad? They talk about you. They say “you are a smart hockey player. You think the game well.” Does that come from your dad?
Everybody says it. [Head Coach] Kirk Muller says,”You know what? He’s such a professional.” He hates to lose. Can you talk about Kirk Muller?
I just work on myself. I don’t know how to explain this. I like working with Kirk. He’s a good coach.
Before I let you go, when you’re training in the summer, is it true you train with a ski team?
Ski team, yeah. The coach for the ski team have a group. And the young guys — same like me — starts training with this guy in June and practice two months with these guys.
Whatever you’re doing there, you’re doing right. What are your hobbies when you’re not training?
Fishing. And I like other water sports like jet skis in summer.
We’ll try to get some video of that. Alex I wanna try something because you’ve taught me a lot of Russian. But you didn’t teach me this. This will be my best try. And then I’ll translate. [Tripp speaks absolutely terrible Russian.] Alex, we’re proud you scored your 200th NHL goal as a Carolina Hurricane.
[inaudible] I really happy to scoring Carolina 200 goals.
We’re very happy to have you here. Good luck.
So… Frost/Nixon, right? And how much does it burn to hear him say “I like play here” after he said the SAME THING to us?!