Bob Hartley was in good spirits when he did his post season interview with Flames TV as he spoke about the appreciation he has for his team.
Although Hartley is surely disappointed that the Calgary Flames didn’t make playoffs again this year, he is still very proud of his team for making “interesting steps” during this season.
He seems to understand that the team is a tight group behind the scenes and off the ice. As Hartley explained, “we’re a big family.” His smile said it all – it’s obvious that the tight-knit team truly cares about each other on and off the ice, which, I believe, translates to wins and near-wins during games.
When confronted about his future with the Flames, Hartely explained, “I love what we did as an organization but I also understand that I am just a part of this organization…this game is not about myself.” It’s that humble attitude that filters through his team and creates a humble, focused group of players and people.
And he had nothing but good things to say about the players on his team. When asked about Sean Monahan and the young forward’s chance to play in the World Championship, Hartley explained that it will be good for Mony to “learn the game from a different angle.”
Hartley has high praise for leader, Giordano, saying, “I had no doubt that Mark Giordano would be a good captain…[he] is the ultimate pro.”
Hartley also explained that putting Joe Colborne on the wing, instead of leaving him at center, was compensation for his great play this season. “I couldn’t give him enough ice time on center…I wanted to make sure I was rewarding him with the proper ice time.”
In reference to Johnny Gaudreau and Bill Arnold joining the lineup in Vancouver, Hartley seemed as impressed as the rest of us. “Both had a great game…I thought they did quite well.”
In the end, it’s clear to see that Hartley is very happy with the final product at the end of the year, and I believe that he, like the fans, are looking forward to next season. The work that he has put in on this team is apparent in the progress that has been made throughout the entire season. “It’s a process, it takes time. I look at the dedication, the commitment of all the players…I saw commitment and I saw progress.”
What started out rough at the beginning of the year ended up bringing hope to the masses of fans. It can’t be made any more evident as Hartley said, “I love my players.”
With the strides that the team has made all season long, it’s plain to see that the coach has also made huge strides as well. Thank you for a great season, Bob Hartley!