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The Rock, NJ • United States • 35 Years Old • Male
Source NJ.com

The Devils weren't Anton Volchenkov's first choice.

The hard-hitting defenseman, signed as an unrestricted free agent July 1, would have preferred to stay with the Ottawa Senators.

"I would have liked to stay in Ottawa. My next choice was to find a good place for me," Volchenkov said today as he visited the Prudential Center.

So why didn't he re-sign with the Senators?

"They made me an offer, not good enough," Volchenkov said. "That's why I didn't sign with Ottawa."

Struggling just a bit with his English, he said he had offers from a couple of different teams.

The Devils targeted Volchenkov even before they lost Paul Martin to the Penguins. They like his hard-hitting style.

General manager Lou Lamoriello said Volchenkov gives the Devils something they've lacked since Scott Stevens ended his playing career.

"Scott Stevens is a legend. He was hard to play against," Volchenkov said. "I try to play hard every game."

So why the Devils, other than their six-year, $25.5 million contract offer?

"This is a really good defensive team," he said. "They always play in the playoffs. They always play hard. They're a very exciting team.

"I talked to my wife. This is not too far from friends. I spent eight years in Ottawa. I have lots of friends there. This is tough, but it's part of the business. I don't like changing teams, but it's hockey."

He said he hopes Ilya Kovalchuk signs with the Devils, but hasn't tried to influence the left winger.

"It's (been) interesting. I'd be happy if he signed here," Volchenkov said. "He's a good player. It's not my decision. It's a decision for him."

The blond-haired defenseman sported some chin hair. He said he is in New Jersey to meet some Devils players, find a house and a school for his son.

"I just came in last night," he said. "It was a long, delayed flight from Ottawa. I was tired."
Filed Under:   new jersey devils   Anton Volchenkov  
July 15, 2010 5:06 PM ET | Delete
I will be sad to see him playing against the Sens. Volchekov was a true warrior and I will give him a standing ovation upon his return. To all you Devils fans who think they paid too much for him, you didn't. He is the kind of guy that every team needs and gives 100% on every shift.
July 16, 2010 3:32 AM ET | Delete
I can't seem to find the part where Volchenkov says the Devils were his 2nd choice. He did say Ottawa was his first. I know he obviously did sign in NJ, but he may have had other preferences who didn't offer him a contract.
July 16, 2010 10:33 AM ET | Delete
He wanted to stay in Ottawa but $$ was more important... I guess he didn't care where he went as long as they showed him the green.
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Blog Archive

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15 Anton Volchenkov: Devils were my second choice
15 MacLean meets the A-Train
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