Daniel Winnik spoke to Bryan Hayes about his time in Toronto and what he’s looking forward to in Pittsburgh:
First thing that comes to mind about the Pittsburgh Penguins:
Chance to win the Stanley Cup. With Crosby and Malkin I think you’ve got a chance every single year. I’m looking forward to helping that cause.
It used to be my job to try to shut them down. I don’t think I’ve done too good a job of it the past few years. It will be nice to help them score instead of trying to keep them off the scoresheet.
Handling the rumours of the past few months:
It hasn’t been that bad. I think I’ve handled the rumours and stuff really well having been through it before. I said earlier or last week in an interview that I was approaching every game like it was my last for the Leafs. I think that helped me manage with all the rumours, just expecting it to come every day. Sometimes the stress levels got high, but that’s just the nature of this game.
Experience as a Toronto Maple Leaf:
It’s tough in a sense. I’ve had some personal success, but ultimately you want team success and we just didn’t get the job done this year for whatever reason. To be on the wrong side of some records for the Leafs is a little disappointing. I mean, I enjoyed it for sure and will never forget the experience. Extremely happy to have played for my hometown Toronto Maple Leafs, even to have worn an A, I know it was just the just one game in Carolina, but that’s a big part of my career because I haven’t worn a letter before. A lot of good memories leaving this place.
I don’t think there was one point where I thought it would get to the point where we’re at. I don’t think we played terrible hockey after Randy was gone, we just couldn’t score. The point where I thought we couldn’t get it back was when it hit about seven games in the slide, then we knew it was trouble.