Who was your favorite team as a kid? Fly­ers, Philadel­phia. I’m from that area, and we had a per­sonal re­la­tion­ship with Bobby Clarke through my fam­ily, so I grew up watch­ing those guys.

Who did you model your game af­ter? Al­ways grow­ing up I drew com­par­isons to Todd Ber­tuzzi a lit­tle bit. I think prob­a­bly not as hard or tough as him, but at the same time we play a lot in sim­i­lar ways: use our bod­ies to pro­tect the puck and get to the net. He was al­ways a guy I looked up to, and I got to play with him (in Anaheim in 2007-08).

What was your‘ wel­come to the NHL’ mo­ment?

It was un­for­tu­nate. I opened my ca­reer with my first two games over in Lon­don, Eng­land, so it wasn’t the same. It didn’t have that feel. So com­ing back a lit­tle while later, lin­ing up next to Mike Mo­dano. He’s the be-all and end-all for Amer­i­can hockey grow­ing up for me. Know­ing I wore No. 9 my whole life be­cause of him and then watch­ing No. 9 across the ice for me, it was great.

Do you have a favorite spot on the ice? Just off the in­side of the left dot. I want to call it “The Ovechkin Spot,” but that’s where I like to roll my­self into if I can. Five-on-five more so than power play. I try to find those lit­tle ar­eas where guys can come cross-ice.

What’ s your favorite way to score? I would say one-timers, be­cause you know you got a hold of one and some­body made a good play to get you the puck. There’s noth­ing better than that one-timer com­ing across to you as you’re wait­ing for it. You’re sali­vat­ing.

What is your cra­zi­est fan in­ter­ac­tion? When I got traded to Ottawa, I went out and stood on the street and no­body knew who I was yet. Then I did this re­ally cool thing where I in­ter­viewed peo­ple: “Have you heard about Bobby Ryan? Do you know him ?” No one picked upon it ex­cept for one per­son. Then I got to see it on air a cou­ple of weeks later and how that had changed and how I couldn’t go to that same spot cause peo­ple fig­ured it out. That was prob­a­bly the cra­zi­est just with the lack of anonymity.

What’ s the best thing about play­ing in the NHL?

Trav­el­ling. With trav­el­ling you get to be in a lot of dif­fer­ent cities, a lot of dif­fer­ent restau­rants, then when you do get a day off, you can walk all over the city, ex­plor­ing ev­ery­thing.

What’ s the worst part?

It’s not as bad in the East, but some­times the travel. It’s not even a jet lag thing, it’s just the late-night, early-morn­ing thing. It some­times wears the body down a lit­tle bit. And be­ing mar­ried with a young daugh­ter, it makes you want to leave home a lit­tle less. So I spend some ex­tra time at home be­fore head­ing to the air­port, that’s for sure.

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