George from The Malik Report pointed out an interview that Pavel Datsyuk did with sportbox.ru, which was posted by Dmitry Sakharuk. It's a great interview, which you can read translated here. Among the discussion of his role in Russian hockey and the birth of his daughter, I particularly loved this:
In the NHL playoffs, you lost to Boston. Was the opponent stronger in every respect?
"I wouldn't say so. Though they confidently won the series against us, and deservedly won. There was so much talk about how the team had been making its way into the playoffs for over 20 years, and that it's a sign of permanence. And in my opinion, those who think that way are thinking incorrectly. It's time to change the stereotype. The team needs to be challenged to not just get into the playoffs, but to get into the playoffs and win the Stanley Cup."
First off, giving credit where credit is due to the Bruins for being the more-deserving team in the first round series is the right step. I really love how openly he mentions that "The Streak" in Detroit has become something of a red herring for us. It may all just be pillow-talk for all I know, but to hear a player at least echo the sentiment that so many of the fans have been talking about in regards to wanting the team to actually compete for the Cup rather than sit content to extend the streak is refreshing.
I wish Pavel gave more of these interviews on our side of the pond.