February 10th, 2007, 12:56 PM #1
Anze Kopitar Article in Dnevnik newspaper
Here is another Anze interview from Slovenian media.
Enjoy and sorry for any grammar mistakes.
I wear grandmother's number
Young Anze Kopitar is a real king. He has no kingdom but he has thousands of fans. He is one of the Slovenians who has found his luck across the Atlantic, like many forfathers who traveled there decades ago. He is a king because he plays for a hockey team called LA Kings.
Although a modest guy outside the ice – he lives with a roommate near the coast and not in luxurious Beverly Hills like many teammates – he is not modest on the ice. He is one of the best and even Californians started to look where this Slovenia is actually situated.
You’re 19 and you play among the best hockey players in the world. Also your bank account is getting bigger. Have you at the beginning asked yourself if you’re dreaming?
(laugh) Just a few years ago my dreams were very similar. I’ve watched Americans, Canadians, Russians and Swedes on TV at the Olympics and thought how nice it would be playing with them one day. 4 years later I’m here and I play with the best in the world. This is phenomenal!
You’re probably one of the richest young Slovenians at the moment. How do you treat yourself? What is the most expensive thing you’ve bought till now?
I don’t spend much. My biggest “treatment” is sleeping which is at the same time very good for me. I don’t go out much because that wouldn’t be good for my hockey.
But you have an SUV Audi Q7 which costs 70.000 $ parked in your garage?
I have. I like this car very much. European cars are really the best. It feels like driving a limousine and it’s pretty safe too.
LA seems like a true place for shopping?
There are so many shops that’s really hard to choose. But I don’t really have much energy for shopping. It’s more important that I rest in my free time. But now and then I have to visit some shops because I can’t wear the same shirt al the time.
Playing hockey in California must be very special. Outside is sunny and you spend a lot of time on the ice.
It’s really something special. I have a privilege that after practice I come out of the Arena and it’s always sunshine, 20 Degrees Celsius, no cold at all. This must be the best place to play hockey in the world.
LA is famous for it’s nightlife. Have you meet any celebrity yet?
I went to Hollywood a couple of times where I’ve meet many famous people. And in most cases they’ve acted like a normal people. I’ve meet Britney Spears, Eva Longoria and my friend Cuba Gooding jr. who likes the Kings and hockey very much.
Your game schedule is very hard, sometimes you play 4 games a week. You must know a lot of hotels by now?
There are many hotels but the biggest problem is the time difference. When you’re traveling one hour doesn’t mean much but when you go to sleep at one in the morning it clearly shows the next day.
When you’ve signed your first professional contract you were told about many “dangers”. Also about the female fans. You must notice now that you’ve become more attractive for the girls?
We had the so called security meeting where I was told how to act in public and about different dangerous situations. In NHL nothing is left out. Regarding girls – I have “luck” because in California hockey isn’t so popular. If I would play in Canada it could happen that I would be molested by girls.
Stereotype says that a typical Californian girl is blonde with silicon breasts.
(laugh) I agree. When I walk on the beach I’m sure that 7 out of 10 women I see have artificial breasts.
Are you single? Is regular sexual activity important for a top athlete?
Of course sex is important. But we have to save with our energy and nightlife with girls is not an option for a top athlete.
Is it hard to live away from your loved ones? Can you tell us how much do you spend for your telephone calls?
(laugh) My telephone calls are very expensive. I speak with my family and with friends regular and minutes are just flying away and dollars too. But this is the way it is. I can’t just forget about my family and friends. We are very close.
When talking to the Americans they say that the food is bad. But I find it very tasty. And you? Do you miss your mother’s cooking?
Everyone misses mother’s cooking but I think the food here is great. Specially steaks and also Italian, Chinese and Japanese food aren’t bad. Even some real grill food can be found. So I don’t suffer because of the food at all.
You were at home months ago and will probably return in April when the “Group B Ice Hockey World Championship” will be held in Ljubljana. Do you know that you’ve become a huge star in Slovenia?
I can't imagine how popular I’ve become in Slovenia. But my family and friends say that it was quite big there when I was drafted by LA Kings and when they saw my play. I haven’t been at home for a long time and when I’ll return I will see it for myself.
I’ve seen some Anze graffiti in LA. Fans must really like you.
I’ve also noticed the graffiti and was very surprised. I was talking to one of the fans and he said that the team hasn’t had a rookie like me for a long time. And that they really like me. This is an honor for me. I’ve became one of them. And also my jerseys sell quite good.
You’re from Jesenice but you’ve overgrown local rivalry between the red (Jesenice) and the green (Olimpija Ljubljana). I’m saying this because there are many good hockey players in Slovenia but it seems that they’re not so suitable to play in NHL.
I’m certain that some other players could play in NHL – like Jesenice players Tomaz Razingar and David and Marcel Rodman. I can’t say that they’re not fit because I’m convinced that you have to have some luck and be on the right time on the right place. I’ve had such luck they obviously haven’t. But Slovenian hockey players will play in the NHL in the future.
Why are you playing with yellow gloves?
When we were buying hockey equipment we went to Klagenfurt (Austria) to buy it. And I wanted yellow gloves that could match my yellow stick. The habit remained. I can’t wear them here of course but I’ve put them on a special place.
Why do you wear number 11 on your back?
I’ve got this number because I was number 11 on the draft. It’s funny because my grandmother wore the same number when she played basketball. Otherwise I’ve always wore number 13 or 14 like my father. Grandmother told me about this later and she says she knows why I play so good.
Some of your teammates earn much more money than you although they don’t play so good. Is this bothering you?
I don’t see it this way. Guys are older. I would have a better contract if the rules were different. Rookie can earn max 850.000 $ a year. I hope that in future I will earn a dollar or two more.
You must be satisfied that your coach treats you like he does. You play a lot and are still in the race for “a rookie of the year”.
It is very positive for me that I’m among 3 players that Kings don’t want to sell. It’s an honor for me that they believe in me.
It looks like you’ll spend some more years in California. Will you try to learn surfing?
Some of the teammates can surf very well and I’m convinced that I’ll learn too. But they say it isn’t so easy and the water isn’t very warm this time of year.
What about acting? It's a short way to Hollywood?
I think I’ll never be a movie star. Maybe I will do some commercials. But I haven’t had such an offer yet.
February 10th, 2007, 01:09 PM #2
February 10th, 2007, 01:15 PM #3
February 10th, 2007, 01:44 PM #4
ha thats a interesting article, they seem to be very interested in his financial situation there. him and the rest of the kings go out quite a bit in hermosa beach so i thought the parts about not doing nightlife and partying was funny
February 10th, 2007, 01:57 PM #5
cool article...karma for you!
February 10th, 2007, 02:40 PM #6
February 10th, 2007, 03:23 PM #7
"When I walk on the beach I’m sure that 7 out of 10 women I see have artificial breast."
Aint this place great?
February 10th, 2007, 04:44 PM #8
I think its great to here come out of Anze's mouth....I think it would be awesome to start to having Anze in kings commercials since he probally will be the face of this franchis over the course of hopefully the next 5+ years
February 10th, 2007, 08:53 PM #9
He's 19 years old. He can't admit to drinking and partying out. its not legal.
Originally Posted by imamonsta
February 11th, 2007, 12:46 AM #10
Waiver Wire Pick-up
Ojla, Puck!!!! Did I miss or you didn't tell us the source??? Lady??? MF Direkt!?!?
Well, anyway thanks for your effort... Go Kings, go Anze!!!!
P u A skupino aprila!!!!!!!