Jacques Lemaire: "I'm Very Pleased To Be Part of What We Started."

Nick MaxsonCorrespondent IApril 14, 2009

DENVER - APRIL 15:  Head coach Jacques Lemaire of the Minnesota Wild leads his team against the Colorado Avalanche during game four of the 2008 NHL Western Conference Quarterfinals on April 15, 2008 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado. The Avalanche defeated the Wild 5-1.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

During a press conference Monday morning, Jacques Lemaire made sure he thanked everyone, including the media, for his time in the state of hockey.

"You have to have good people that believe in you," said Lemaire about the Minnesota front office.

Jacques went on to specifically thank Wild president and general manager Doug Risebrough, his former teammate in Montreal and now former boss, for giving him the opportunity to coach in Minnesota.

"We had good people to work with," which Jacques seemed to really appreciate.

Lemaire had six straight winning seasons with Minnesota, including this past year where the Wild finished with a 40-33-9 record. 

Jacques lead the Wild to the Western Conference finals in 2003, where he also won the Jack Adams award for the second time in his career.

Last season, Lemaire also hit the 500 win mark as a coach and captured his first Northwest Division title.

Jacques wasted no time before thanking his players, past and present.

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"I have to thank the players; they are the guys that make me look good."

Minnesota finished with a three game win streak and, according to Lemaire, he saw what he had always dreamed the team would look like during his last days as coach.

Although Minnesota will miss the playoffs for the first time in three years this spring, Lemaire kept his head high on the success he has seen with the Wild.

"I don't think we had a bad year, to me they were all good years. There were years with more success and some with less."

Lemaire then went on to thank the media for being easy to work with, and for being supportive.

Jacques compared the media in the Twin Cities with the media from Montreal and  chuckled on how the media for the Canadiens wanted to know what shorts he was wearing.

Last but not least, Lemaire thanked the fans and the state of hockey.

"Fans from Minnesota, you guys are unbelievable."

Lemaire went on to say that he felt right at home here in Minnesota, and even his wife was starting to call the Twin Cities home.

"We come here, and you people came [to the Xcel Energy Center] game after game, even in exhibition, and it was always packed."

"It's the best environment for players and coaches, and that's what we got here."

Although Jacques Lemaire's time in Minnesota has ended, he mentioned that he would be interested in coaching again next year, or even working in a front office like position.

Wherever he ends up, Jacques Lemaire is one of the most highly respected people in the league. From Ken Hitchcock to Todd McClennan, he is considered one of the best coaches and greatest minds in the game.

"I can tell you we had a lot of fun," said Lemaire, and he will be looking forward to more great times in the world of hockey as early as next season.