Q and A With Nikolai Kulemin

NewYorkIslanders.com caught up with the newest Islander on Thursday

Thursday, 07.3.2014 / 2:59 PM ET / News
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Q and A With Nikolai Kulemin
NewYorkIslanders.com caught up with the newest Islander on Thursday

The New York Islanders announced a big free agent signing Wednesday, inking physical winger Nikolai Kulemin to a four-year contract. The 27-year-old Russian spent his entire six-year NHL career with the Toronto Maple Leafs, scoring 30 goals in the 2010-11 season. Kulemin was signed on the same day as former-teammate and friend Mikhail Grabovski.

Kulemin is spending his offseason abroad, but NewYorkIslanders.com had the chance to catch up with one of the newest members of the Islanders.

NewYorkIslanders.com: How does it feel to be a New York Islander?

Nikolai Kulemin: It feels pretty good. I am happy to join this organization, as they have a great group of young guys who can improve. I am happy to play for the Islanders and to play with Grabovski again. We have good chemistry together and I am happy to sign a new contract.

NYI: Did you guys actively try to play for the same team?

NK: We talked a lot after last season. We thought it would be great if we could play together somewhere. We didn’t know if that was going to work or not, but I am happy that we get the chance to play together again on the same team and now the plan is to make the playoffs and go far.

NYI: How close are you guys?

NK: We are pretty close friends. We lived together for a while in our first year, but after that, we’ve lived [apart, but] pretty close. Our families are always in touch, even when he played for Washington. We are pretty good friends.

NYI: Tell the fans what kind of player you are? What do you bring to the game?

NK: I like to play physical and protect the puck down low. I like to shoot the puck; score goals. I like to play a fast game, forechecking the defensemen.

NYI: The team is moving to Brooklyn next season, are you excited for the move?

NK: I think it’s going to be great to get a new building. It’s going to be a good experience to play there. I know a lot of Russian people live in the Brooklyn area, so it’ll be a good experience for us and maybe a lot of Russia fans will start going to the games.

SCHEDULE

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - MTL 77 47 22 8 203 174 102
2 x - NYR 75 47 21 7 228 177 101
3 x - TBL 77 47 23 7 249 201 101
4 PIT 76 42 23 11 210 190 95
5 NYI 77 45 27 5 235 215 95
6 DET 75 40 23 12 220 206 92
7 WSH 76 41 25 10 223 188 92
8 BOS 76 38 25 13 201 196 89
9 OTT 75 37 26 12 218 203 86
10 FLA 76 35 26 15 190 207 85
11 PHI 76 30 29 17 198 219 77
12 CBJ 75 36 35 4 207 232 76
13 NJD 76 31 33 12 168 194 74
14 CAR 75 28 36 11 174 204 67
15 TOR 76 28 42 6 198 244 62
16 BUF 76 21 47 8 148 255 50

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 77 34 43 -2 77
R. Strome 76 16 32 20 48
K. Okposo 55 16 31 -11 47
F. Nielsen 76 14 28 8 42
B. Nelson 77 19 22 7 41
A. Lee 71 23 16 10 39
J. Bailey 65 15 23 3 38
J. Boychuk 67 8 25 9 33
N. Leddy 73 10 21 14 31
T. Hamonic 67 5 26 16 31
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 36 16 2 .913 2.42
C. Johnson 8 8 1 .889 3.08

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