Our interview of the week is with Washington Galaxy C Eddie Costello.
SHL Digest: Today we’re interviewing Eddie Costello of the Washington Galaxy. Eddie, thanks for sitting down with us.
Eddie Costello: My pleasure! Glad to help the Digest.
SHLD: So, you’re close to winning the East. How does that feel?
EC: We’re not taking anything for granted, here. New York has been coming on strong, lately. We’re not celebrating until we’ve won.
SHLD: Sorry, not trying to jinx you there. What have been the keys to your success this season?
EC: I think it’s the fact that we’re a really balanced team. We’re strong on both ends of the ice. Teams that are too focused on one side over the other generally can’t get too far. Also, Roger [Orion] is doing a great job in net. That’s key.
SHLD: It is! But you’ve been key too, haven’t you? You’re one of the league assist leaders.
EC: Honestly, I think that says more about playing on a line with Casey [Thurman] and Jefferson [McNeely]. It’s really easy getting apples [assists] when you’re setting up a couple of shooters as great as they are. I’m just looking to hit them in good spots and trying not to screw anything up.
SHLD: Is it hard being on a line with two top scorers like that? Do you ever find them both calling for the puck at the same time?
EC: Fortunately, no. We’re an unselfish team; guys aren’t obsessed with piling up personal stats, as long as we’re winning. Besides, they’re both strong in different areas. Jeff likes to work from the faceoff circle on the right side. That’s his office. Casey likes to work closer in; he’s all about the tip-ins and greasy goals.
SHLD: What’s it like playing for a coach like Rodney Reagle?
EC: (laughs) You mean, what’s it like playing for a lunatic?
SHLD: Well, he seems a little… different.
EC: Oh, he is. But not in the way most people think. All that stuff he does with the costumes and the goofy quotes, that’s mostly for you guys. The way he figures it, if all the reporters are talking to him about wearing a Dracula outfit on the bench or whatever, that keeps the pressure off of the players, so we can just work.
SHLD: So you’re saying the craziness is an act?
EC: Oh, no, he’s definitely crazy. But he’s not a clown. It’s more like he marches to the beat of a different drummer. Like we’ll be on the road to the arena, and he’ll stop the bus so we can look at a statue he thinks is cool, or he’ll have us play hacky-sack sometimes at the beginning of a practice.
SHLD: Or he’ll take you to see the singing cows in Hershey.
EC: Oh, God, the cows. We’re lucky that didn’t tear us apart.
SHLD: Are those guys still singing the jungle?
EC: Not much anymore. They knocked it off after about a month, for the most part. But I really thought it was going to come to a fight in the locker room. Thank God we were able to resolve it peacefully.
SHLD: So, if you don’t mind looking ahead a bit: If the season ended today, you’d be playing for the championship against Anchorage. How do you think you’d do in that matchup?
EC: Anchorage is a really tough squad to beat. They’re balanced, like we are, and they’re really talented. I think the key there is first, don’t get intimated just because they’re good. Second, you’ve got to find a way to slow the game down a little, because they can turn it into a track meet. If you can dictate the tempo of the game, keep the pressure on in the offensive end, you’ve got a good shot.
SHLD: Well, good luck! And thanks for taking the time to speak with us.
EC: No problem. If we do wind up losing the division, though, I’m telling the guys it was your fault.
SHLD: Fair enough.