Among the many storylines in the Kings-Sharks second round match-up this year has been the effectiveness of Brent Burns. A few summers ago San Jose paid a hefty price to acquire him from the Minnesota Wild. Normally a defenseman, Burns was moved to right wing in March and few would argue it’s paid dividends for coach Todd McLellan.
Given the Kings struggles on offense at times, coupled with Slava Voynov‘s love for shooting the puck, would he welcome a similar move in Los Angeles?
“No. It’s not for me,” said the 23-year old Russian native, following practice today. “I like doing my job, playing defense. It helps the forwards. But, I don’t want to play right wing or left wing, it’s not for me.”
He went on to say that it’s not even something he’s ever tried – despite the urging of his father.
“Before I went to hockey school, my father, he wanted me to be a forward. But when I started playing for my former team, I don’t know why, but I was always a defenseman.”
Not just any defenseman though, one with an offensive touch.
Over the past two seasons Voynov has scored five playoff goals, include three game-winners so far this year.
“Right now I play defense and I want to score goals, make passes, get points, everything.”
Maybe some of those offensive instincts can also be credited to one of his early role models though.
As a young boy, Voynov says he looked up to Sergei Zubov.
“My father showed me videos of him all the time – how he played defense, how he played offense, the blue line, how he passed, everything.”
Perhaps papa Voynov was on to something too. Zubov won two Stanley Cups and posted 117 points in 164 NHL playoff games.
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