Jim Jamieson of The Province caught up with the forever-class-act Markus Naslund to discuss his career, his family, and his retirement. His time with the Rangers was addressed, and Naslund had nothing but great words for the organization:
Q: When you signed with the Rangers year ago, had you made a decision it was time for a change or were you still open to returning to the Canucks?
A: I hadn’t made a decision prior to July 1. I was still talking with Mike (Canucks GM Gillis). I was hoping and expecting to have a choice about coming back. But after July came around, more and more I had the feeling it wasn’t meant to be and it was time for a change. Looking back, it was probably the right thing. I had a great time in New York. I was treated like a king there.
Q: Was being in a secondary role in New York a relief in some ways?
A: It was good for me to go to New York and not be the focal point and not have that media attention. I felt I could relax a bit.
While Naslund didn’t live up to some people’s expectations last season, he definitely exceeded mine. I had him penciled in for 15-20-35 while leading the kids. He did all that, and even chipped in ten extra goals to lead the team in that department (sad when the leading scorer put up 24 goals).
Brian Burke offered him a scouting job, it’ll be interesting to see how he would do in that role.