Eurolanche talked with Ian LaperriereEurolanche fanclub brings you exclusive report on the former Avalanche player Ian Laperriere with his quotes.
Ian was the heart of every team where he played. He
was tough and emotional guy who was willing to do everything for the win. Fans
loved him not only because of his skills on the ice. He was the same class off
the ice. Ian was always smiling on fans and has never refused requests for
photos or signatures. True professional. So it was big shock for all fans when
he left teams where he was adored. It was harder for Kings´ fans. They spent
great eight years with Ian and suddenly he signed new contract with the
Colorado Avalanche. “It was tough
decision. I became free agent and negotiating were not doing well. I made
decision to make a move. Avalanche had better contract offer. It was not easy,
trust me,” said Ian exclusively for Eurolanche.
After one year lockout, Ian was ready to contribute with
his style to his new employer. Ian did not play anywhere while NHL season was
canceled. But do not have worries. He trained all the time and maybe that was
one of the reasons why he had his best season of career in the following year
as an Av. “Some guys took it easy during
the lockout and went on the vacations. I went the other way. I trained as hard
as I have ever trained before. It was exciting to be in Colorado Avalanche.
They were great players like Andrew
Brunette or Joe Sakic. It is one
of those years I will never forget,” remember on his first season in Mile
High City. And what about current possible lockout? “Anything is different than in 2004. Last time owners wanted new system.
I do not think it is hard now like it was before. Players will have to give up
little bit, owners will have to keep some stuff, but I am sure there is the
deal to be done before September 15th.”
Ian Laperriere and David Puchovsky, Martin Polka from Slovakia and Martin Janeba from Czech Republic in the Pepsi Center after the game in 2008, Eurolanche Invasion I.
Theodore, Sakic, Milan Hejduk, Rob Blake, Brunette, Marek Svatos and Peter Budaj were for Lappy great teammates and friends from the
Avalanche roster. He stays in the touch with them in spite of there has been
years when he played with them las time. Speaking about Sakic, Lappy continues: “I learned a lot from him. I was in my
thirties but it did not matter. He is a superstar for reason. It is amazing how
many hours he stayed in the gym to stay fit and flexible. That´s people did not
see, but I did. It was honor and privilege played with him,” said. Ian had
good memories not only on Super Joe, but also on Blake too. They were teammates
in L.A. and then re-joined in Denver. Blake became free agent in 2006 and left
the team. “Blakie is a hall-of-famer.
When you let guy like him go, it is hard. We missed him quite off on the ice
and off the ice.”
After four years in Colorado nobody expected Lappy
would not be a part of the team for the following seasons. It all changed
suddenly and he was away. Fans were shocked and sad. The warrior disappeared. “Negotiating was not the way I would like to
go. The offered me less money than I was making year before for only one year.
Flyers give me a raise and three more years. It was no brainer for me and my
family. To be honest, it was only reason why left. It was kind of a slap in the
face when they offer me less money,” said Ian. He did not forget to add how
he and his family loved their time in Colorado, but simply could not accept the
Norbert Gruber from Austria with Ian Laperriere after practice in the Pepsi Center in 2009, Eurolanche Invasion II.
Ian signed new contract with Philadelphia Flyers. You
could not be surprise, if I would say you he has become all-time favorite
player with a big heart. Unfortunately, his style of the play caused two big
incidents. Firstly, he was hit by puck in November 2009. “The first one in November I took was really painful. I took it in the
mouth and loose eight teeth. Blood everywhere,” remembers on the moment
when he also needed dozes of stitches. Lappy was back for the third period and
did not miss a game due the big hit. Head coach was worrying about him more
than himself. Second hit happened later in the same year in the playoffs. Lappy
had to miss one series, but was back again. He absolutely does not think if
this come back has an impact on his retirement. He just wanted to help the team
won the Cup. That´s was his job. After two hits of the puck he had to miss two
entire seasons in a row. Unimaginable length. “It is has been hard. I have never been fan of it (watching), I always
been fan of playing. It happened to me in 36, it could happen in 26. I played
way I wanted to, I did not change my game, I am proud,” said for www.eurolanche.com.
One of the greatest team player all the time had to
retire definitely this year. The second hit by puck damaged his nerve in right
eye and caused another concussion of his career. “I still have some problems - blur vision. I feel pretty good. I work
out every day. It could be worse I could lost my eye. I am very thankful for
that,” said Laperriere who has the hardest part of his career over him. The
post-concussion syndrome causes moods swings what is never good for the family.
Lappy´s was and is still strong. He is loved and loves them.
Laperriere broke his nose probably 8-9 times and it has become his trademark. He
even refused to wear shield because he did not take advantage of anybody. He lost
many teeth, suffer different minors and majors injuries, but always stay the
same person. “That´s a way I played. I
did not regret anything,” is his favorite kind of motto. Yes, Lappy, we
could see it on the ice too. It was our pleasure to shout your name in the
stands and watched you in the action. Thank you.
Ian has stayed in the Flyers organization like the director
of player development. He is satisfied and does not know if he will be coach in
the future. And will he join the Avs sometime?
“No (laugh). You never say never, but
they have own group. They really rely on the Stanley Cup teammates like Stephane
Yelle or all of those guys like Adam Foote.“
Get signed hockey card or photo of Ian Laperriere for free and with the dedication! If you want it, contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org!
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29/08/2012 - 18:00