Semin makes headlines in Russia

Sovetsky Sport (Chesnokov) and Sport-Express (Malamud) interviewed Semin after the game with Tampa. Below are the most interesting snippets...

Sovetsky Sport: We have never seen this Semin before!

- We want to know what happened to you? Did you change anything in your preseason preparations? Injuries not bothering you anymore?

- I am not sharing my secrets. I just go out there and play. And lets not talk about what was in the past. I left my injuries behind and don't think about them. The season started well. God willing, it will carry on.

- You seem much more comfortable when Backstrom is on the ice along with you.

- Because we know each other a little bit. And our style is a little bit different, European. It's easy when we pass to each other.

- When did you realize you may get a hat trick?

- We were winning, I did not even think about anything else.

- Alex, you are so modest. Are you mindful of the fact that your contract runs out after this season?

- No. I just go out there and play. If I get an offer – then I'll think about it. What's the point of thinking about it now?

Sport Express: Semin – the best Alex in the NHL?

- You never had such a powerful start before.

- I don't know... many things are going right. Playing with Sashka and Backstrom, the luck seems to be on my side. And, I used to have all these injuries. But I am not thinking about how and why too much. Just trying to play as well as I can. And score when I can. Because if I keep scoring, the team will be playing well.

- So, now you are the biggest star in Washington?

- I think it's too early to talk about that.

- May be you should on the covers of all those magazines, like the other Alex?

- Ah... honestly, I don't need that. Not chasing the covers.

- If you keep playing like this, they will be chasing you.

- I doubt I'll ever want that. Of course those covers are flattering, but I never wanted to be on them.

- Everybody was expecting a duel between Ovechkin and Stamkos. Did you surprise yourself?

- Who was expecting a duel – reporters? Well, that's their business, I only play for the result, that's all.

- By the way, what do you think about Stamkos?

- A very shrewd player. He knows where to go – wherever the puck will bounce. Not everybody can do that, pick a spot. He does.

- It seems you are gradually removing the questions that surrounded you before the season.

- What questions?

- Would you be able to earn a contract that you want?

- I played well last year. Just couldn't score in the playoffs. So many chances, and nothing. It just happened that way. And I don't think it's fair to judge my season only by the playoffs. But I am trying to improve every year.

- The rumor is going around in the media that your new contract is going to cost Washington around eight million a year. They probably cant afford it...

- I am just not counting the money right now. When the negotiations start – the agent will do the numbers. Seriously, I am just absolutely not worried about it. I don't agree that Washington can not afford me. If I want to play here – we'll resolve it.

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