A. Well, it's easy to overestimate the difficulties. In the first place, hockey is fun for me. It's not work to play hockey, even against the Boston Bruins or the Chicago Black Hawks. Law school is mostly memory work, and if I didn't do anything but study law I'd go nuts. I couldn't spend all my time in the library; I'm just not made that way. So when I found that I could do them both, study law and play hockey, I jumped at the chance.
Q. I realize that you're the original cool hand, but weren't you just a little nervous when the Montreal Canadiens called you up from the minor leagues toward the end of last season?
A. Well, maybe, but looking back on it I realize now that Coach Al MacNeil handled the situation very wisely. I admit I was a little worried when he didn't even dress me for the first three games. I watched from the press box, and I felt like an idiot.
Q. Is that a comment about us sports-writers?
A. No, but what was the point of calling me up if it wasn't to play? After three games I went to Al and I said, "Hey, can't you at least dress me for the game, make me feel like a part of the team?"
Q. What did he say?
A. He didn't say anything. He just started me in the next game.
Q. At Pittsburgh?
A. Right, and it was a very intelligent move. First off, it relieved the pressure of breaking in at The Forum in front of the Montreal fans. Even at Pittsburgh I was nervous. My knees were jelly, my legs were shaking so hard I thought everybody in the place could see it. For the first time in my life I stayed nervous through a whole game.
Q. You won. right?