Playing to win
With two championships under his belt, veteran forward Ruslan Fedotenko wants to add a third to his repertoire. By Patrick Kearns | Photos by Claude Belanger
heard the old adage: "you win with players like him."
Well, Ruslan Fedotenko may be the living embodiment of
The two-time Stanley Cup Champion has only missed the
opportunity to compete in the NHL playoffs once in his
11-year NHL career.
Simply put, he is a winner, a fact upon which he
prides himself. Even while discussing life in
New York City, his main focus never swerves from
adding another ring to his collection. You could
say it's an obsession.
"Just need to win the Stanley Cup, and that
would be everything," he says, adding that
another ring in his already extensive collection
would be the cherry on top of his time spent
with the Rangers.
Playing for an Original Six franchise in North
America's largest, most lively metropolis is not
something that every NHL player gets to
The Kiev, Ukraine native relishes the
opportunity, and is simply thrilled to be
putting on the blue sweater each night at the
World's Most Famous Arena.
"I love it. I think it's a great place to live,
[a] great place to play. I think our
organization is great, the city is great, travel
is great. Can't complain about anything."
Growing up in a big city himself, it didn't take
the winger too long to adapt to the pace of New
York. He claims to be used to the noise and
crowds, so it was not too precipitous a change
for him. He does admit, however, to one distinct
difference between NYC and his hometown.
"You have a lot of visitors," he explained.
"When they come in, obviously we go to shows,
restaurants and everything else. I think it's
definitely when you live in New York... a lot of
people want to come and visit you."
The life of an NHL player is often nomadic,
which takes a toll on many players. Malleability
is a important trait to foster when you spend
you life moving from city to city and racking up
miles on the road.
"Wherever I am, I am enjoying whatever that
place offers," he candidly explains about the
many places he has had to call home throughout
On the ice, Ruslan is a fearless player, a
quality he carries to his off-ice interests as
If he had not been gifted enough to play
professional hockey, he admits he would
"probably be racing cars," another arena in
which he believed he would succeed.
He remains focused,
however, on the ultimate goal. And for Fedotenko, that goal is always
winning. He refuses to be distracted, and uses every day to become a
better player, a better winner.
"Right now I'm just focusing on having a another Stanley Cup, another ring
on my finger... that's the goal and I am just trying to focus on that."
No small task. But then again, Fedotenko is no ordinary player.