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That’s the word Soo Greyhounds defenceman Ryan Sproul used to describe his play following a loss to the Windsor Spitfires Dec. 6 at the WFCU Centre.
Sproul was addressing the brain trust the Red Wings had sent to watch him play, which indluded assistant general manager of hockey administration Ryan Martin and advisor to hockey operations Chris Chelios.
Martin had just finished asking Greyhounds general manager Kyle Dubas if that was the kind of performance Sproul had been turning in regularly, who replied with an emphatic “no.”
Keep in mind, this is following a tightly-contested loss where Sproul had an even rating, one assist, and by my count several takeaways and scoring chances.
Here is my interview with Ryan:
Rob Benneian: Obviously not the result you wanted, but I thought you had a pretty decent game.
Ryan Sproul: Not one of my best games recently. I’ve been playing pretty well recently and this was more frustrating for me. New coach (Sheldon Keefe) coming in, and we had to learn a lot of new systems. It’s kinda like going back to the beginning of the year again. To come in and learn all these new things is frustrating.
RB: What’s Keefe like?
RS: I haven’t gotten to know him too well yet, seems like a pretty good guy. We’ll see what he can do for us.
RB: What was your previous coach (Mike Stapleton) like?
RS: Mike was a player’s coach, a really good guy. We were sad to see him go. He was really nice to us, a really good personality. To have Sheldon in here, hopefully he’s a little bit harder and we’ll get the results.
RB: Tell me about getting named to the selection camp (for Team Canada’s WJC entry).
RS: I wasn’t really expecting it, I was out with a broken arm (Oct. 6-Nov. 20) and I missed the Subway Series (where he would have played for Team OHL against Team Russia) which was kinda rattling for me because I wanted to be out there and show my stuff. I’m glad they came to see what I had and I’m glad I got selected.
RB: I saw you tweet about taking the bus in at 6 a.m. (from Sault Ste. Marie to Windsor) this morning. That seemed odd to me.
RS: It’s brutal. We’re up at 6 o’clock in the morning, get stuck at the border in the Soo for two hours then come down here. I don’t know what the protocol is for that, if we’re supposed to be doing that but it’s pretty tough on the legs. There’s no excuses but it’s definitely not easy to do.
RB: Is that something you guys regularly do?
RS: We’ll bus down the day before it’s further away, this is a six hour bus ride. It’s far but it’s not that far for what we do regularly.
RB: I know the Wings guys were in attendance today, and coming into Windsor you gotta figure they’re gonna be here. What’d they say?
RS: Yeah, I expect them to be here. They said this wasn’t my best game. Kyle Dubas told them this wasn’t my best game. I’ve been playing pretty well. I was just frustrated and tired and didn’t have my legs. I gotta turn that around for next week.
RB: Do you feel caught up strength-wise from the broken arm?
RS: Yeah, it’s fine. In the beginning I was kinda nervous to get back but it’s fine now.