Our mock interviews roll on to deal with one of the more interesting offseason acquisitions by Scott Howson - former Nashville Predators / Milwaukee Admirals goaltending prospect Mark Dekanich, who is expected to step in and take over the backup role behind Steve Mason.
Q) Hi, Mark! Tell us a little bit about yourself?
I was born on May 10, 1986 in North Vancouver, BC. I catch lefty, and was drafted in 2006 by the Predators before I went on to play four years at Colgate. From there, I went on to Milwaukee where I became their starting goaltender, but I didn't really have a chance to break into the NHL because of Nashville's existing depth in goal. I made the decision to go onto the free agent market this past summer, and I signed a 1 year, 1 way deal with Columbus on July 1st. I also got married July 4th weekend, so I have a lot of exciting stuff going on right now.
Also, I have a really cute dog.
Q) Tell us about some intangibles you could bring to the Blue Jackets?
I'm bringing a lot of confidence and aggression...."swagger", if you will? I've got a lot of drive and I like to push myself to compete as hard as possible. I think I'm going to come into Columbus and give Steve Mason some competition for the starting job. I want to keep it friendly, of course, but I know that if he should take a step back, I have to be ready to step up, and I want to use that to make both of us better. I've got a very blue collar attitude about going to the gym or the rink, and I think my perseverance and dedication will pay dividends.
Off the ice, I bring a good attitude in the locker room and a lot of fun - I like playing around with the guys and joking around on Twitter. I also think I've done a good job of getting to know the fans in Columbus, and being a good part of the Columbus community.
Q) What areas of your game do you think you can improve on?
Since this is my first full NHL season, I need to be able to step up my game from the AHL and deal with the higher pace of the action. I'm also going to need to adjust from a starter's mentality to being prepared to go in at any time - part of my job is going to be keeping myself cool and collected so I can help with pulling the team out of the fire if there's a bad situation.
Q) Can you give us some examples of your hockey accomplishments?
Well, I currently hold the Milwaukee Admiral's single season records for save percentage (.923) and GAA (2.09) and last season I was named to the AHL's Western Conference all star team. During my time at Colgate, I won the Ken Dryden Award for best goaltender in the ECAC and was named goaltender for the ECAC's first all star team.