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Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Husky Talk: Blueline Special

After the interview I posted with Colin Murphy, I thought this is fun and it gives people a different look at players, so I did not want it to end there. So I went to my buddy at Mitch's Misfits and tossed the idea of interviewing other members of the Michigan Tech Huskies. I ended up with a long list of players, but it did tell me that fans want to know what their favorite palyers are thinking. This week I (MCH) picked the mind of the one of the top defensemen in the WCHA and the leading blueliner on the Huskies, Lars Helminen (LH). I know that all the players are busy with school and practice, so I would like to send a thank you out to Mr. Helminen and any other players that I may interview in the future.

(MCH): Well the Huskies had a decent weekend, but could not get a win against the #2 ranked CC Tigers. Having said that, we need to come back this weekend against UMD and get some points. What are the elements of the game that the team will concentrate on for the UMD series?

(LH): We need to continue to do what we have done when we were successful which was working hard for all three periods and playing smart hockey.

(MCH): You have been paired with many different players this year, do you feel that one fits your playing style than the rest?

(LH): Lately I have been paired with Mark (Malekoff) and he seems to fit my playing style the best. He is more of a stay at home defensemen and this allows me the flexibility to jump in the play more.

(MCH): Sorry to bring this up, but we (MTU) were one of the worst defensive teams in the nation. Now in the second half of the year we see a different team. In your mind is there one player or one play that has helped this turn around?

(LH): The second half has been a factor of a few different things. First and foremost our goaltending has been outstanding. The other thing is that as a team we are playing much smarter to limit opposing teams chances.

(MCH): As a player that gets a good view of the offensive zone, and with Chris Conner and Colin Murphy out there, not to mention the rest of the Huskies, do you find yourself sitting back and watching some of your teammates working the puck?

(LH):
No, with those guys working the puck the wingers on the opposing teams tend to get suck down and it gives me a chance to sneak in the play.

(MCH): You have emerged as one of the nation’s top blueliners do you find yourself getting too involved in the offensive?

(LH): Not at all, my main worry when I'm on the ice is to keep the puck out of my own net and when there are opportunities then I will jump in the play.

(MCH): The year is quickly coming to an end, what is a realistic goal for this team?

(LH): A realistic goal for this team is to move up a few places in the standings and then make the WCHA final five.

(MCH): I know this year is not yet completed, but when some of my Hockey friends and I talk about the team next year, we wonder who will step up and be a captain. Your name has come up in the conversations, any interest in being the leader?

(LH): Being the captain of the team would be a great opportunity and would be something that I would be very interested in.

Thanks again Lars and good luck to you and the rest of the Huskies.

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