MacIntyre's return has fans excited

ROBERT TYCHKOWSKI, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:08 PM ET

The first rounders aren’t the only ones who’ll be providing the excitement this season.

The guy in charge of first-round knockouts will be selling his share of tickets, too.

As excited as fans are to see Jordan Eberle, Magnus Paajarvi and Taylor Hall this season, a pretty big segment of the population is just as happy to see Steve MacIntyre.

This is a city, after all, that loved Dave Semenko, Dave Brown, Marty McSorley and Georges Laraque every bit as much as the skill players they were paid to protect.

“I was fortunate enough that they drafted these guys and asked me if I wanted to come back,” said MacIntyre. “I was ecstatic.”

MacIntyre loved his previous stint with the Oilers, but his time here was cut short by Pat Quinn’s refusal to employ a tough guy. New coach Tom Renney, on the other hand, sees the value of never being out-muscled.

“I look at teams that Tom’s been with before, like the Rangers,” said MacIntyre. “He had Colton Orr and Dale Purinton. He had some tough cowboys there. He said that I’m here to play and to watch out for these younger skilled guys, watch out for my teammates, not just those three guys, but everybody.”

The ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign is officially on Edmonton’s skill players. Mess with them, you mess with him.

“I think I’ve made it perfectly clear that I’m going to hold everybody accountable.”

MacIntyre intends to be more pro-active this season — more Derek Boogaard, if you will, than Georges Laraque.

“I’m going to change a few things in the way I play,” he said. “Nothing too out of the ordinary, but I’m going to play with a little bit more of a chip on my shoulder. Instead of going out there and being a gentle giant, I’m going to go out there and see what I can do, bring the fight to somebody else, be a little more up in your face.

“I’m not saying I’m going to go out there and be a complete meat-head, but it’s going to be fun.”

robert.tychkowski@sunmedia.ca


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