BOSTON BRUINS DEFENSEMAN MIKE MOTTAU POOL QUOTES
On if it’s a dream come true to join the Boston Bruins having grown up in Quincy, MA… It sure is. I grew up watching the Bruins and I had a conversation with my parents and they reminded me I wanted to go to Harvard to be a carpenter and play for the Bruins. Those were my two things when I was a little kid.
On how playing at Boston College will help him embrace the hockey community… Well, I mean I’ll definitely embrace it only because it’s such a great hockey town. Growing up there and having the experience of playing close to home in college and playing in some big games in the Garden – and having family and friends to be in the stands each night will be quite a thrill for me. Some people might not be able to handle that type of excitement or pressure, but I’m definitely going to embrace it.
On who some of his favorite Bruins were growing up… Ray Bourque and Cam Neely were the two I really enjoyed, but I can run down a list of guys I really liked. I remember being able to name all the guys in the 83-84 media guide by number and name – it’s been a lifelong Bruins fan so coming back I have a lot of excitement and like I said , those would be the two guys. I emulated my game early on after Ray Bourque because he was such a great player and again, it’s quite a thrill for me.
On how it is going from the Islanders to a team at the top of their division… It’s, you know I enjoyed my time on the Island, but unfortunately had a few injuries. But, to be able to go to a contender and have a chance at the Stanley Cup and repeating on a Stanley Cup team is quite a thrill. I’ll do whatever it takes to add value to the team and I think I’m more prepared to do it now – just kind of understanding roles and being part of a group that’s been there before and hopefully I can fit in seamlessly.
On how it was coming back from his concussion… It was really difficult. There was really no definitive timetable on those. With any other injury to a body part, you can have a timetable and can battle through some pain, whatever it is. But with this, it gets frustrating. It’s really a mental grind as well. Like, sometimes you can get in your own way mentally and start to feel a lot better and get back on the ice, then the excitement of competing again was great when I got back in the game, but it was a difficult time. There was a lot of media attention to concussions, it’s a little bit hypersensitive maybe, but I was definitely banged up there for a couple of weeks.
On how he would describe his style of play… I would say just a steady, two-way defenseman who can make a good outlet pass, adding value at some level here. Something I can duplicate over and over again is making a good outlet pass, and making good reads relying on my hockey intellect and reading plays and anticipating. It’s not sometimes the showiest game that I play, but as far as adding value, that’s what I’m looking to do on whatever level that I’m needed.
On if there was any talks of him being a Bruin in the past… Yeah there was some talks a couple years ago – my agent had some conversations but there was just really no room for me. I always said I’d take a puck in the teeth for the Bruins, now I have a chance to do that.
On if he thought it was too late in his career to ever play here… You know what, I really did, to be honest I just stay in the present and I let things happen as they may and I’m grateful for the trade and fortunate because I’m so familiar with being from the area and m family is extremely excited. You hope that it’s going to be a good fit and I can produce whatever they need me to do.
On when he got the call… I was actually in a car on the way to Walter Reed Hospital [in Washington DC] to visit some wounded warriors and I got a call from coach [Jack] Capuano and he said I was traded to Boston and I was excited, it was a lot of different emotions through your head right away. I was extremely excited mostly and my first phone call was to my wife and she didn’t believe me for a bit because we have four kids, and she’s going to come back down from Long Island in a couple of weeks and we have family in the area. So I was in a vehicle going to the hospital and I ended up getting dropped off at the next corner so I could get back to the hotel and get things in order so I can get back to Boston tonight.
On if he has any connections to the team… I know Shawn Thornton pretty well, he played with my college roommate Jeff Farkas up in St. John’s. And we became pretty friendly early on, I think this is around 2000 or 2001 and he was actually the first text message I got. I was actually talking to my coach when he told me about the trade and Thorty texted me so it was good, a pretty nice gesture coming from a great guy.
On Shawn Thornton being the “mayor” of Boston… He is the mayor, but he does a great job on and off the ice for the B’s.