Marc-Edouard Vlasic was heavily featured in Elliotte Friedman’s excellent weekly “30 Thoughts” column. It’s worth reading the whole thing, but here’s the pertinent bits about Pickles, including his desire to spend his entire career in San Jose. I’ve included the quotes. You can head over to the column to read it all in the proper context.
“I like to win. For me it’s about winning,” Vlasic said by phone on Monday. “If I score 10 points all year and we win the Cup, I’ll be very happy. It shows I’m lucky enough to be on a team that is in the race every year.” His father, Ed, was a pretty good defenceman at McGill University. “He used to joke that I’d never be as good as him, and then when I was 13-14, he said, ‘Yeah, crap, you’re better than I am. They used to call me Steady Eddie, but your game is better than mine.’”
On his style of play:
“I think with Weber, Keith and myself, we’re not very flashy,” Vlasic answered. “Weber has the hard shot, but if you took that away, you wouldn’t notice as much about his game. You watch video on those two, and they don’t make mistakes. We make plays that are never really talked about, do everything right at the right time.” Where did Vlasic think he’d be drafted 12 years ago? “I never thought first round. I didn't have the numbers. I didn't even think second round, maybe fourth, fifth or six. When I saw second round, I thought, ‘Oh my God. Ok I'll take that.’” Vlasic sat at home, “watching” the draft on his computer. “I do remember hitting refresh, refresh, refresh. Okay, is that my name? Then I Googled my name to make sure.” He remembered feeling he could be a player after his first NHL game. “They threw me out there most of game against Keith Tkachuk. I’ve been watching this guy, a power forward. I handled myself okay. I thought, ‘I can play and try to make an impact. This is what I'm going to be doing.’”
San Jose has a comfortable lead atop the Pacific Division, one year after falling to Pittsburgh in the Stanley Cup Final. Has Vlasic ever re-watched that series? “No. Once something is over, I’m not one of those people who looks back and says, ‘I should have done this.’ If you should have done that, do it in the first place. It's over, they were better than you.” Then, he pauses. “Well, if I learned anything, it’s don't start 0-2.” I think the Sharks are really good. Does he? “We are as good as anyone in the league. We can't get too complacent when we are good. That happens to us sometimes, so we have to fight through it. We did it last year, and we will have to this year. That’s when we are at our best. If we do that, we have what it takes to go all the way.
On Vlasic contract talks
“I love it here. I’m not really a guy who wants to play for three or four teams. I like the city, I like the organization, we’re always competitive. What’s not to like? I want to play my whole career in San Jose.”
San Jose remains in on Zach Aston-Reese
Also from Friedman’s 30 Thoughts:
4. Among early NCAA free agents, the top name is probably Zach Aston-Reese of Northeastern. He had a big year, with 63 points in 38 games, mainly because he did a great job as net-front presence on the power play. It’s interesting. At different times, different teams made their push. Some of those involved changed their predictions. Ottawa GM Pierre Dorion went and saw him in person, but the Senators pulled back. Pittsburgh took a real run at him. So did Edmonton and Vancouver. Anaheim and San Jose made pitches. It’s probably one of those five. Tuesdays are quiet for Aston-Reese, so it won’t be surprising if he makes his call.