"We lost that idea of what being a professional athlete is supposed to be. It’s not about just showing up, putting your time in, punch the clock.” Those are tough words from Gorges, but when a team basically tanks the season away, that is the definition of unprofessional — especially since fans paid to attend games.
Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY SporTimothy T. Ludwig
Patrick Kaleta — Buffalo Sabres
"If I can give my right arm to be here, I would. I’d try to play with one arm if I had to.” Playing professional hockey without a right arm seems like a difficult thing to do, but it’s nice to know that Kaleta is dedicated.
USA TODAY SportsKevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports
Brad Marchand — Boston Bruins
“When you’re at the top, you feel like it’s going to be there all the time. It’s always going to happen. This is a big wakeup call for our team … We definitely took it a bit for granted and expected it to be there.” Finally, a Bruin admitted the obvious. This team expected everything to be handed to them and didn’t want to earn it on their own.
Getty ImagesMaddie Meyer
Tuukka Rask — Boston Bruins
“What is failed? F? Because if you don’t make the playoffs, you’ve failed." It’s hard to decide what’s more entertaining: Rask not knowing what letter represents a failing grade or his brutal honesty about the Bruins’ season.
Al BelloAl Bello
Phil Kessel — Toronto Maple Leafs
"I love Toronto. The fans have been great to me. I love the guys and I love playing here. So hopefully I’m back.” This quote is pretty interesting considering the number of times Kessel called out the fans and media in Toronto this season.
John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY SpoJohn E. Sokolowski
Joffrey Lupul — Toronto Maple Leafs
“I just want people to see what type of people they are.” This was Lupul's answer to why he favorites so many negative tweets on Twitter. Nothing says you’re a nasty person like having a tweet favorited by Lupul.
Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY SportTom Szczerbowski
Jaromir Jagr — Florida Panthers
“A lot of people thought I was done but those young guys give me extra energy, extra life and I’m glad I can continue to play.” Anyone looking for the fountain of youth just needs to get in touch with Jaromir Jagr who seems to have all the secrets to staying young.
NHLI via Getty ImagesEliot J. Schechter
Willie Mitchell — Florida Panthers
“It’s kind of bittersweet because [rookie Aaron Ekblad] does feel like your kid a little bit. He’s moving out so I’m going to be sad to see him actually leave the house. I’m sure he’ll be over about two, three times a week for dinner.” Naturally, one of the toughest parts of the end of the season for a captain is when your 19-year-old teammate is finally old enough to move out of your house and live on his own.