Tyler Seguin is thrilled about his new six-year, $34.5 million contract extension with the Bruins and said Tuesday in a conference call that he's ready for the high expectations and increased responsibilities that follow.
"I think as it is, I have high expectations of myself," Seguin said. "I like to say I adapt to situations well and I'm confident. I think that I have a lot more improvement still to come and I am confident that I can earn a lot more respect both from players and also management. That's what's going to keep me motivated and that's my game plan."
The 20-year-old said he's ready for an increased leadership role, as well.
"I think that's where I am now in my career," he said. "I've settled in in the last two years and I don't look at my age as a factor. I want to be a leader even at the age of 20. Being situated with the boys and learning everybody and everyone in the organization, I feel that I can step into those leadership roles and step into those shoes. Whether it's new guys or not, just being a good example on the ice that's what I want to do."
Seguin expressed appreciation to Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli for believing in his ability and rewarding him with a generous contract.
"It's a great feeling," Seguin said. "Signing a lengthy with a lot of money, it comes with a lot. But it's a great feeling to know that Mr. Chiarelli and the organization have faith and trust in me and how they think I'm going to become and how I am. That's probably the best feeling you can really have. It's not only the years and the money but the feeling that the organization has trust in you, who you can become and who you are."
Here's more from Tuesday's conference call:
Seguin on his desire to stay in Boston:
"I've started my career here and I fell in love on my first visit," Seguin said. "I'm a Bruin and I'm happy to be a part of this group of guys and I consider them my brothers and I'm happy to start a life here."
Chiarelli on Seguin's progress and increasing maturity on and off the ice:
"He is maturing before our eyes and I feel that the hard work he's shown us and the willingness to put in that hard work continues and the sky's the limit for Tyler.
"I see a progression that I am satisfied with. Tyler's a young man and he was a teenager when he came into this mix and he's still a young man. All of us at the age of 20, we had growing to do and Tyler's the same thing. But I like the progression and I like what I've seen.
Seguin on his own maturity and progression:
"I think learning from all the older guys and especially a guy like Mark Recchi, he'd be a guy that would sit me down and talk to me not only about on the ice stuff but just how to conduct yourself off the ice. I know it is a lot more of a learning process still going on and I'd like to say that even though 'Bergy' is still young and my linemate, for the most part I'd like to say he's my role model. I'm not going to get right to Bergy's stage, but it's somewhere where I strive to be."
Chiarelli on rewarding Seguin big on second contract versus the third, like the B's did with Brad Marchand:
"Certainly to have known Tyler for two years now plays a role in giving a player an extension of that magnitude. He's a high-level, skilled player and he led our team in scoring. In a sense we may stray a bit from that path that we talked about with Marchand. ... when I first got here we signed 'Bergy' [Patrice Bergeron] to a long deal after his second year. In the two years I've got to know Tyler, we're projecting -- and this is maybe more projection than we're used to doing. 'March' [Marchand] was on his third contract -- I see a player who is committed to getting better and Tyler is baselining at such an already high level. But he has things to learn and get better at and Tyler knows that and I see such a high baseline that I think it's a prudent thing to do under the current set of rules. Sometimes we have to make decisions like that and we made that decision with Tyler."
Chiarelli on locking up core players before CBA expires as opposed to Bruins' approach before last lockout when they let UFA's walk:
"We've tried to maintain a core. I think that's generally what teams do and we're not splitting any atoms here. We're trying to lock up our younger players and in the context of a new CBA I am taking the approach that -- and I believe it will prevail in the end -- I'm taking the approach that if we have to shuffle our roster or delete from our roster to get to a level of salary, then it will be hard for us to do from the perspective of trading players.
But I'd rather have the player locked up and I'd rather have him committed in what I think is a responsible and working framework in light of where the CBA will go. Then I'd rather try and deal with it then and with players that we know. That's the important thing. ... I know the optics don't look great with guys coming together to get a CBA in place, but I gotta do my business as usual and we've got some good young players that we're trying to keep in the mix for a while."
Seguin on the possibility of a lockout and potentially losing some of the money that he signed for:
"Obviously I am just happy to be here for another seven years counting this one if everything works out. I thought it was a fair deal and right now that's what I'm focused on. I'm not thinking about too much about losing money in the future. I support Don Fehr and the PA and what's going on in the bargaining agreement and hopefully it all works out for the best."