Recently, Alena Grebenkova from Sports Express conducted an interview with Washington Capitals defenseman, John Carlson, about his experiences since the NHL was paused on March 12, 2020. The following is a translation of a portion of that interview.
Q: How did your daily routine change after quarantine was introduced in the USA?
JC: I try not to just sit around. I constantly remind myself that the season can resume at any moment, and I must be ready. I try to keep in as good of physical condition as I can at home. Quarantine is a difficult time, but everyone can find some advantages with it. For example, I spend a lot of time with my children, and try to find a variety of things to keep them occupied. For me it was both a difficult challenge and a great experience. I never had spent this much time with them. In quarantine, I can completely devote myself to my family.
Q: In the USA, the situation with coronavirus is very difficult.
JC: Fortunately, nobody in my family has had to deal with this disease. But people with weak immune systems who have other health problems have really been hit hard. The situation in the USA is very difficult, and I am already afraid to make any predictions, but it seems that some improvements can be seen.
Q: The USA leads the world in the number of cases and the number of deaths. If the government had closed the borders and ordered quarantine a little earlier, would it have been possible to avoid problems of this magnitude?
JC: I do not know. I can say one thing, thank God that I do not have the authority to resolve such issues. This is clearly not in my power.
Q: Do you believe that the NHL season will resume?
JC: I am completely sure that we will be able to finish the season [to include the awarding of the Stanley Cup]. But when and where, I can’t say yet. These decisions will be made by the league and the NHL Players Association. But I think that we will start playing again this summer.
Q: They say that the next season will begin in December. Can you imagine that?
JC: This, of course, is not the schedule that we are at all used to. But all players really want to finish the current season after a long break. I think that, after that, the league will need two or three years to resume the familiar calendar with the October start. In the meantime, the seasons might be compressed.
Q: Most likely, you will play the rest of the games without fans for the rest of this season. Does this make sense?
JC: Today, there is no other way to do this. Although I cannot even imagine how it will look. Most likely, very strange and unusual. But all the players want to play the rest of the games this season. I think, we can adapt to most conditions and circumstances.
Q: Almost all sporting events around the world are canceled. Only E-sports are left. Do you play FIFA, DOTA or any other E-games, yourself?
JC: I can play FIFA when on road trips with the guys from the team. Honestly, I’m new to these games. But with each road trip, my skills are improving.
Q: How did you like it when Alexander Ovechkin against Wayne Gretzky in NHL 20?
JC: Unfortunately, I could not watch. But I heard that they made a great show. It’s very cool that the guys collected such an impressive amount to donate to charity.
Q: You said that you were trying to stay as fit as possible. Tell us about your workouts at home.
JC: I have some sports equipment that I use to the fullest. Nothing extraordinary. Lifting weights and jogging are all we can do in quarantine.
Q: Many players complain that they have never had such a long break, especially without being able to skate.
JC: Yes. This is really a very unusual feeling. But you need to understand that we are all in equally difficult conditions. Of course, to realize it and accept it is not easy. But when we return to the ice, we will all be in a roughly in the same boat: a little rusty.
Q: What can you recommend to our readers as interesting things to do during quarantine?
JC: At home, we mostly watch cartoons [laughs]. But I also started watching a documentary about Michael Jordan. That was really interesting.
By Diane Doyle