Read the Transcript from Monday's Press Conference
Francois Giguere: Good afternoon everybody. First of all, I would like to say that I wish that we were preparing for the playoffs today, nevertheless our stretch drive was remarkable, just to see the reaction of our fans this past weekend I think confirmed that they appreciated the effort and that in the drive that these players made that finished the season and that the they feel optimistic about the future of this organization.
I'm here today beside our team captain Joe Sakic and I'm truly privileged to announce that the Joe has signed a new one year contract for his 19th season here in Denver all with the same franchise. Joe is truly the heart and soul of this team for him to be on board is a positive message to our team. He had a tremendous season, no doubt he is a leader on and off the ice and we are looking forward to have him lead this team in 2007-2008 season. And now I would like to introduce our captain, Joe Sakic.
Joe Sakic: Thanks Francois. I'm very excited to sign another year here, obviously that's why we are here today and I'm really excited about the way this organization has going on right now, the way the young kids have played this year, the stretch drive, I think we really grew up as a team. This group of guys never quit, we didn't make the run unfortunately and we would like to be doing this press conference in a couple months, but we are here today and we're very excited about what we have here, the run we just had shows what type of team we have, we're really looking forward to next year, we expect to be going into the playoffs and not only in the playoffs but competing for the Stanley cup. We're looking forward to getting it going. We've got a great organization here, from our ownership Mr. Kroenke, the goal here is always to win and we expect to be right back in there -----.
Jean Martineau: Thank you Joe, just before we open the question period, Francois and Joel watned to bring to you some important points about the last season and I'll let Francois begin with a few points and then Joel will follow up.
The first thing that was made is last summer, the development is under the responsibility Craig Billington, but we hired Sylvian Lefebvre to help us and Craig and Sylvian all year with Joe Saco, have worked with our young players in Albany and we saw the emergence of Kyle Cumiskey who came up for nine or ten games, seen guys like Jeff Finger who has been a part of our system for a few years and never had an opportunity to play in the NHL, to come up and play and play in a very strong environment.
Secondly, for our players that are unsigned and playing at the college and junior, Craig and Sylvain travel all over North America to follow their games and follow their progress and make sure that we can prepare them to be the best professional athletes they can be when they are going to join our organization. We've seen the recent side of Chris Stewart and are hoping to have a lot of our good, young prospects sign in the next few months and join our franchise.
The segway to that is that the third element is that from a development point of view is this winter we announced a long term agreement to have our own American league franchise, that's going to be playing in Cleveland and they are going to start the operation next year and they are going to be called the Lake Erie Monsters. Our young players are going to develop there, we will control the whole roster, we will control the coaching staff and ensure that our players grew up with our style of hockey and culture which I think is important for them to get ready to be NHL players.
Lastly, from a development point of view, this summer we will have a one week development camp that is going to be the longest development camp that we have ever done, we've done these now for four years in a row, but that's it and that's a way for us to get to know these young players and help them to get ready to start off on their pro careers or continue their pro careers for some of the young guys. These different elements will ensure the long term success of this franchise. Once again, thank you for coming, I think our season was a tremendous success and are we disappointed we didn't make the playoffs? Of course we are. But the future of this organization is promising and we finished with 95 points which is three more points than any other non-playoff team ever, which is the same number of points the team had last year. I think this season was a success and I would like to thank you.
Jean: Thank you Francois, and Joel why don't you go ahead with your ------ as well.