How quickly did this come together and how easy was it to get this done?
Lou Lamoriello: I don’t know how easy it was, but we were just fortunate to get it done. Timing is everything, so we decided that because both were done we’d announce both today.
What is the significance of having them both done today?
Lamoriello: I don’t know if there is a significance. All I know is getting both done is the most important thing, really to show the commitment to them that they’re core players in this organization, and also to continue on the process of what the plan of Brendan has been — to get the foundation as solid as we can, get the players in the organization that we feel will help us win, and just to continue building.
What leadership potential do you see in Rielly?
Lamoriello: I’ve had the opportunity to be around him now for a year. His potential is unlimited on and off the ice. Certainly, as a player, the qualities he has are god-given — his skating ability. Also, the job the coaching staff has done with him defensively – his upside is unlimited. As a person, I don’t know if you could meet a finer individual.
Kadri has had some bumps in the road. Last year, he had the suspension for the off-ice stuff. This year, the diving fines and the suspension at the end of the year. What stands out about him as a person that made you want to commit with him long term?
Lamoriello: I think that, throughout the year, both Mike and I have both continuously said the respect that we have for the way he is as a player and the way he competes each and every night. There is nothing that he leaves on the ice. As far as some of the issues that he has had, we certainly came in here with no preconceived notions. I’ve had the opportunity, like with Morgan, to spend time with him. Brendan, Mike and I believe in him 100%. We feel that, for him to make the commitment to take himself out of free agency for four years, that he wants to be here. We know what he can bring, and we have total confidence that he’s grown as a person as well as a player.
With respect to the commitment and building the program here, is it good to have that message for the other young players in the organization, that if you make the commitment to the club, they’ll make the commitment back to you?
Lamoriello: Without question. I think that’s an excellent question. I think any commitment that you make has to be two-fold. It’s not one-sided. We have trust in both of these players today, and obviously they have trust in us.
Does this make the rest of the offseason easier, knowing you have these dollar figures to work around going forward?
Lamoriello: I think anytime you can get contracts like this done, and have some solidity to that area, is helpful.
Morgan Rielly Media Address
Nazem Kadri Media Address