(What is this day like from the players perspective?)
I think like we said from day one, we were confident and always positive that a deal could get done. As players and athletes, we’re not as polished in the realm of business as these owners are, and that’s why they’re the owners and we’re the players. So for us, this is not a process that we know too well. We’re proud of it, in a sense, that we’ve come to an agreement. And most importantly, the league’s going to continue as scheduled. The details of it, I think, are yet to be revealed, but at the same time we have trusted members of our executive board that have been doing this for year’s and year’s and know the ins and outs. We’ve given the people in the room the power to make decisions and they speak for the group as a whole.
(General sense of the players having completed this?)
As players we weren’t necessarily worried with that, in the sense of that this was something that had to be done. It’s a process that you have to go under. The coaches seem to be a little bit nervous more so, but I think that’s because they’re not used to being in the dark with these kind of things. So it’s kind of funny to see them squirm for a while. But as players, obviously now there’s nothing looming over our head. We can get down to business and do what we do best, which is play the game and not necessarily be in negotiation rooms with smarter people than us.
(On the attention turning to Seattle and the home opener.)
We’ve got a tall task at hand. We’ve got a good team coming in. An experienced and successful coach in this league. Quality players. And for us, I’ve been saying this all along, it’s about humility. We’re a hard-working team and we need to get down to the basics. The preseason hasn’t maybe gone as smoothly as we’d liked but at the same time we can erase that with a solid victory on Thursday. Whether that’s a 1-nil scrappy game or a 6-nil demolition of Philadelphia, the most important thing is getting that first win.