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Chat transcript: Jamie McGinn

May 7, 2009

Worcester Sharks left wing Jamie McGinn entered the AHL Chat Room to discuss the Sharks’ ongoing Atlantic Division Finals series against Providence, his experience of playing in San Jose at various points during the season, his experiences in Worcester, and more.


How did you find the energy to not only play in Providence in Game 1 last week after arriving from San Jose, but to come away with both of your team’s goals in the game? – Jared from Worcester, Mass.


Well I think it was just pure adrenaline, you know. There were no excuses for that game, that’s what they told me in San Jose before I came back. I was just supposed to go out there and play as well as I can, get the job done, no matter how I felt really. And that’s how I tried to approach it.

I was riding so many emotions. We had just been eliminated in San Jose by a good Anaheim team, and I didn’t really get to spend much time with the players there afterwards. I was on a plane pretty much right away to join another team and jump right back into a playoff atmosphere. So coming from what happened in San Jose, I had to get back to a positive mindset to help this team here in the second round.

 

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Including the regular season, you now have eight goals in 10 games against Providence this year? Is that just a coincidence, or do you feel comfortable playing against the Bruins? – Mike from Holden, Mass.


I really think it’s just coincidence. It would happen to me a few times, too, in juniors, where I’d have a lot of success against one or two teams much more so than the others. My dad actually mentioned to me how well I have done against Providence and basically said now you have the chance to go and do it again here in this series. But I also think it’s a little because we play them so many times and see them so often; that helps.

 


What are some of the top areas in which the team needs to improve on to have a chance of getting back in the series against Providence? – George from Framingham, Mass.


Well, I think overall we’re fine. Obviously we didn’t play as well as we wanted in Worcester last night. They have a great team and had good success against us during the regular season, so we certainly know what we’re up against. But I think if we just stick to the systems we’ve laid out and stick to basics, which include getting lots of shots on net and getting to the net, we’ll be able to find some success against them.

   


What is your favorite part about being in the playoffs, and why? – Courtney from Connecticut


Oh I think it’s just the intensity, the fact that everyone is raising their game to the next level and then to another level. You know, you work so hard during the regular season just to get to the playoffs, and when they’re here it’s all about giving everything you’ve got. A lot of people also make names for themselves in the playoffs, and that’s definitely something that I’m trying to do here is make a name for myself.

 


What was it like going back and forth from Worcester to San Jose a few times over the course of the season? – Corrine & Jordan from San Jose, Calif.


Well I think the toughest part is definitely the travel. You’re a couple of time zones away and generally have to spend all day on a plane to get out there and then to get back. But it’s really been a great experience. I’ve learned so many things up there that I can take back here and really practice and work on such that I can get back there, which ultimately is the goal.   

 


What were some of the things you learned while up in San Jose this year, and which members of that team had particularly strong influences on you, and why? – Casey from Putnam, Conn.


One thing I really learned about was the intensity. I actually think when I was up there, I was more nervous in practice than in the actual games, just because everything is at such a high intensity. For instance, you need all your passes to be on target because that’s the way it needs to be during games or you’ll be in trouble.

There are so many hard-working guys in San Jose who have been through a lot to get where they are, guys like Rob Blake and Jeremy Roenick who have been able to continue their careers at a high level, and other guys like Patty Marleau and Joe Thornton, who have obviously enjoyed some success. There are any number of guys in that room who can help you and serve as role models.

 


What was the toughest adjustment – mental and/or physical – that you had to make during your time in the NHL with the Sharks? – Liliana from San Francisco, Calif.


I think a big part of it was going from usually playing on one of the top lines here in the AHL to moving down to usually the fourth line or so up there. It was almost like going right back to the start of juniors when I went up, working your way into the lineup and trying to make the most of your ice time. Getting eight or nine minutes of ice time a night, you always have to be ready for your next shift but you don’t always know when that will be. So sometimes it’s a little more mentally tough to stay in the game, but you have to find a way.

 


For the San Jose fans that aren’t as aware of your talents, what do you think are your top attributes that you feel you can bring to San Jose on a more permanent basis? – Liliana from San Francisco, Calif.


I like to think that I bring a lot of energy to the ice each and every time I’m out there. I’d like to be known as a guy who comes out and gives all he’s got each night and creates some excitement for the fans, because they enjoy that and that’s really what I want to do as a player.   

 


How does it feel to have won a Gold Medal, and do you have it stored away or displayed for all to see? – Sherry from Michigan


To answer the first part, it feels amazing. That’s what I’ve always wanted to do, you know – I’ve wanted to represent my country and be at the top of something, so it’s something you always dream of and the next thing is making the NHL. I still have the medal, and it’s at my parents house my now and they have it stored way. I think as my career goes on, and more jerseys come in, we’re going to be hanging those things up. We kind of have some things up in the basement, but that’s stored away right now until I find something special for it, and then it will be hanging up.

 


Which linemates in Worcester do you feel are best suited to complement your style of play, and why? – Gerry from East Brookfield, Mass.


There are so many. I like playing with everyone, but I’m kind of a player with energy and stuff like that. When I was playing with (Brad) Staubitz in Worcester, he was creating lots of room for me, and we were both crashing and banging out there. And then I was playing with (Riley) Armstrong, who’s a fast skater, and he can move and score. And then playing with a guy like (Steven) Zalewski, who’s a center who can move the puck, and who can spot you anywhere on the ice. So I like that, and it’s pretty amazing to have. You know, you can put any guy out there and I enjoy it; they’re all professionals and they all know what they’re doing. Whatever they bring, it’s something, and they’re there for a reason, so I enjoy playing with them.

 


How have you liked your overall experience in Worcester this year, and how well do you think it has developed you for the next level? – Phil from Worcester, Mass.


It’s been great. I’ve been loving it here, and just to be able to go up and down my first year, it’s been a great experience for me. But yeah, I love it in Worcester, and they guys have been great. They’re also top-notch guys, and they like to have fun.

You know, it’s just so different from junior. You have some guys in the dressing room that have kids running around and stuff, and I just think the veterans we brought in this year – and the veterans that are still here – have done a great job because we do have a lot of rookies this year. They’ve done a great job of just keeping the dressing room a fun place to be, and I think that’s one of the reasons why we’re still in the playoffs right now.

 


Where is your favorite place to play an away game, and why? – Courtney from Connecticut


Well, I didn’t get to experience every building this year, but one place I really liked playing was Houston. That was fun – they have a great building, good atmosphere, it’s nice outside.

Another good place is Hershey – Hershey was great. We were there when that Giroux guy got his 15-game goal-scoring streak, so the place was going nuts. I think that had to be the best building that I experienced this year. It’s a real nice building, it’s well done, and they really enjoy their hockey there.    

 


What are some of the things you like to do when you’re not playing hockey? – Kevin from Boston, Mass.


Well golf is a big thing. It’s something I’ve grown up doing. I was a big lacrosse player when I was younger, but I don’t do that anymore. I think golfing is relaxing, and it takes your mind off hockey after training or whatever – there’s nothing better than getting out on a golf course on a nice sunny day.