Through all the questions about his lack of scoring through five games of the Stanley Cup Finals, Mighty Ducks captain Paul Kariya politely answered that he was playing within the system and that his time would come. He didn't try to dodge criticism, accepting it with the territory that comes with the $10 million he made this season.
Being the target of shots by the media is nothing compared with having a bullseye on your chest with Devils defenseman Scott Stevens lining you up at the blue line. Kariya has survived both and now has a chance to earn a place among hockey's greatest playoff stories.
"It was a nice way to respond," Anaheim coach Mike Babcock told reporters. "I was impressed with that. I think he's got to feel good about it. When you're stretched and people are calling you out, when you respond, that's the best feeling. That's why they pay you the money."