Kimmo Timonen talked about how he felt through the Blackhawks’ final few games against the Minnesota Wild.
His minutes fluctuated during the second-round series, the defenseman playing anywhere from six to 11 minutes. If the lower tally was frustrating, Timonen wasn’t showing it.
“When it comes to the ice time it’s out of my hands. If that’s the role they want me to be in, I do it,” Timonen said. “I always have to remind myself, ‘If I get six minutes, 12 minutes, that’s more than I was supposed to get anyway. That’s more than I hoped.’”
The positive attitude is not surprising from Timonen. We all know what he overcame to be here, hence his happiness to play whatever minutes he gets with the Blackhawks. And if he’s called upon to do more in the wake of Michal Rozsival’s absence, that’s fine, too.
“I’m ready,” Timonen said. “I’m ready.”
[SHOP BLACKHAWKS: Get your Blackhawks gear right here]
Whether that happens or not remains to be seen.
“We’ll see,” coach Joel Quenneville said when asked about leaning on Timonen more. “You know, the play, the score, (David Rundblad's) play and how the other guys are managing their minutes. But it’ll all sort itself out.”
Quenneville said Timonen has handled everything, especially the lower-minute outings, well.
“I think he’s played situations where the minutes, as the game goes on, probably go down a little bit,” Quenneville said. “I’m sure he wants to be out there. It’s all part of being a pro. I think as a defenseman, the more you play the better you feel you’re contributing. It’s probably not easy, but at the same time he’s been fine.”
Timonen said his health is great — “I haven’t felt this good in a long time.” If he’s asked to contribute more, that’s fine with him. He pushed himself to come back for one last chance at a Stanley Cup. He’s willing to do what it takes to get it.
“This is the reason why I came here, to get a chance to win and (we’re) moving forward the right way,” he said. “I’m just happy about it but still a long ways to go. It’s going to get even tougher now.”