Washington Capitals defenseman Nick Jensen spoke on SiriusXM’s NHL Network Radio on Tuesday about newborn son Lorenzo, the league’s pause, and his thoughts on the fate of the 2019-20 season.
Nick and his wife Jenner are spending time at home with their newborn son, Lorenzo, who was born on March 17. In the midst of the unknown with the 2019-20 NHL season and uncertainty with the Coronavirus pandemic, Jensen said, “It’s a positive that’s going on in our lives, so we’re doing really good.”
With nearly a month into the pause, it gives Jensen the “same feeling” as the end of the season, but “not quite to that level”. Despite not playing hockey, Jensen and the team are still training and staying in shape if or when play resumes. He stays busy around the house to keep a sense of normalcy and of course watching after little Lorenzo.
Several discussions continue to take place regarding the remainder of the regular season, the playoffs, centralized cities, and arena availability dates. Jensen hasn’t kept up much with those “rumors” and said those options have not made its way to the Capitals yet. “Personally, I think it’s a good thing,” he said about finishing the rest of the season.
Looking back on the regular season and what every team went through such as trades, players making a case for their team for a Stanley Cup run, and especially pushing for a spot in the playoffs fuels that time of year, according to Jensen. “When you end the season short like that, it’s just kind of all for nothing.” Overall, he would like to finish the season, be able to get a playoff, and “declare a winner in some manner”.
“It can be a bit of a grind,” Jensen said about summer playoff hockey and then having a month off before the new season begins. He’s not sold entirely on an option yet but does like the idea of completing the remainder of the season.
Jensen said it would “definitely be weird” playing in an empty arena and called it “more relaxed”, which he says wouldn’t be a good thing. Like many other players, he feeds off the crowd and the energy— something the Capitals experience every game. If the team were to play without fans, they would realize “how big of an energy aspect the fans add to the game.”
The Capitals fell 4-3 in double overtime to the Carolina Hurricanes in the first round of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs. It was Jensen’s first postseason with Washington and he called it “exciting” despite the short run. Playing with the Capitals gave him the same nerves that he felt in his first NHL game and the hype of going into the postseason that “steps up a whole new level”.
You can listen to the full interview here:
Audio: SiriusXM radio:
By Della Young