Jabber Jaws: 2023 end of the season interview Kevin Labanc
Kevin Labanc talks about the ups and downs off the ice this season and whether or not he expects to be traded in the offseason.
New father Kevin Labanc looked dazed in his exit interview, showing exactly how life with a newborn is no different for professional athletes. However, he took a few moments between baby naps to talk about his tough season off the ice and what he's doing to prepare for next season.
Labanc on his new baby
Labanc: "Every two hours, two hours or so, wakes up."
Dan Rusanowsky: "Sleeps like a baby."
Labanc: "Exactly. So, but it's good. It's a lot of fun and definitely enjoy it."
Labanc on whether he's spoken to Logan Couture about dad life
"I mean, he's...I don't know, I think I'm just trying to learn myself, but it'll be nice to bounce ideas off each other."
Labanc on his life off the ice this season
"Life hits you in funny ways, in the weirdest times. So, I mean, you know, being a father and then also my father, you know, going through his accident and you know, him being in the hospital for three months. That wasn't easy. So, it's not an easy thing to go through. But you know, just some things are...just transcend above hockey, and that was one of them and you know, family's everything so, it's hard to go through but you know, you're always standing there with with them and staying strong."
Labanc on how his season went
"Not great. I mean, highs and lows. And you know, I think for myself and the team you know, we...it just wasn't enough for...it wasn't enough. And, you know, that's the hard part. I think that you know, we just couldn't really get momentum for ourselves and couldn't really string a couple games, but I think at the same time, you know, playing these last 10 games, it wasn't fun. So, I think everybody's gonna go home and, you know, with a fire in their belly and make sure that we're working hard so that, you know, first month of the season, we're gonna be going out and competing every single game to try and win and put ourselves in a good position."
Labanc on what kind of offseason changes he expects
"I'm not even too sure. I think that's up to Grier. That's his job. So, we'll see. It's our job to play the game and get ready for camp."
Labanc on whether he anticipates being traded
"I think it could happen for anybody. So yeah, you just...yeah, you just work hard and for me, it's just all about getting better in the summertime and making sure that I'm getting ready and doing everything I can to get myself ready for the season."
Labanc on where he stands with the organization entering the last year of his deal
"I don't know what's gonna happen, you know, trades happen, you know, around the draft. So, we'll see where things go and you know, if I do get traded, then you know, it's been great in San Jose, but we'll see. But right now, I don't have any plans for that."
Labanc on what he plans to do to prepare for next season
"I think that the summertime, it's just a good time for mental reset. Go through video, go through tape and see what went wrong or right. But I think, at the end of the day, it just comes down to just all the time effort and work ethic that you put in during the offseason, you know, try and get a good start right from the get-go and hit the ground running."
Labanc on what went right this season
"I think when it was me and Tommy [Hertl] and Timo [Meier], I think we were really playing well together. And you know, creating a lot of chances, playing hard. And then, you know once you get separated, you kind of lose that chemistry a little bit and it became a little bit harder. So, I think you just got to be able to play with anybody."