One last Frans Nielsen contract extension post before we move on. Just thought some of the comments from Nielsen, Jack Capuano and teammates were worth archiving for posterity.
The clips and pull-quotes (from the scrums posted at the official site) include talk of how they see Nielsen as a player, how he's developed since coming over from Denmark, and why he's sticking around -- including if the arena uncertainty bothers him.
His video embed is below, along with links to videos of the others if you're interested. I've also added video of Evgeni Nabokov's appearance on NHL Live, since it might provide the armchair psychologists among us a tiny window into his mindset.
Capuano on Nielsen's development [video link here]:
"Fransie’s come a long way since his days in Bridgeport ... It's a different game coming here from Europe ... [shift lengths]. But the main thing is his strength ... He’s really increased his leg strength and his upper body strength and has made himself one of the top defensive players in this league. He also plays the power play. ... A well-rounded player and a great team guy."
Found the strength topic interesting, since his frame was a concern back when he first debuted in the NHL at age 22 under Ted Nolan.
Note, as I was compiling this I realized the Islanders have added a write-up with a lot of these at the official site.
Nielsen Could've been an Unrestricted Free Agent. Why Stick Around?
"We have a bright future. Seeing guys like Johnny take those next steps. I know we're gonna be good here and I really wanted to be part of that...
...They've treated me really good here. I love living here. New York is a great city. It's a great organization.
...I was here on Day 1 when Garth decided to do the rebuild, and I really want to see it through.
We see it everyday, you feel it in the room. Just, everybody has a feeling that we are going to be really good in here and we know it. Hopefully sooner than later we'll be in the playoffs."
Coliseum Situation: Is it on his mind much, the situation with the arena lease expiring in 2015?
"Not really. Of course you'd like to know what's going to happen, but I'm pretty sure Mr. Wang is gonna find a good solution for us, and hopefully at least we can stay in the New York area here."
In Which Andrew MacDonald Notes What The Average Fan Misses
MacDonald's full interview here:
"He’s been so consistent in his play for all those years. His two-way defensive game with great offensive instincts. ... So responsible defensively. He makes those smart, subtle plays that the average person might not realize, but as defenders, you can really appreciate it."
Kyle Okposo recalls debuting as a pro in Bridgeport on Nielsen's line (with Jeff Tambellini):
"I realized right away he thought the game so well, and he's even gotten smarter over the last four years. Improved his skating, D-zone, become a great two-way forward."
Nabokov High after the 45-Save Shutout
Finally, just posting this because Nabokov was the toast of the fanbase Tuesday night and his thoughtful answers are usually interesting. Despite the onslaught he faced, he credited the Isles for limiting second and third chances.
He also says he finally "feels like himself" after getting a full training camp and gotten over the early injuries. On New York and Long Island: "I actually like it. It's a good area, a good organization. For me the important part is to play some games."
It's fresh in our minds now but will be forgotten soon enough, so when next we stumble here: On the night Nielsen's contract extension leaked, with the trade deadline looming for both him and Nabokov, Frans sealed the shootout with his NHL-leading move and Nabokov put up a shutout in the most impressive Isles goaltending performance of the season.