Alexander Eisath reflects on the reason for his retirement: "Because I'm old (laughs). No, honestly: during this season I realized that I physically can't keep up with the guys. Even the coach made me realize that. This season has put me through a lot, so this decision has matured over the course of the year and now the time is right. Two years ago, after I broke my ankle, I was almost on the verge of giving up, but then I kept going. It was a good decision because it got me back in shape. I don't know how my foot would be now without consistent training."
... on his ice hockey days in the U.S.: "After high school I definitely wanted to go abroad. Our coach at the time, Doug McKay, gave me the opportunity to move to the Northern Mass Cyclones, a team in Massachusetts. Two years later, I arrived at Salem State College, where I not only played hockey, but in my four years there, I majored in Business Management. In retrospect, going to the United States was not the best choice from a hockey point of view, as the Rittner Buam were experiencing a huge development and I would have learned a lot here as well. From the human point of view, however, it was the best decision of my life: in the United States I lived an endless amount of experiences that enriched me."
... on his sports career with the Rittner Buam: "I'm endlessly grateful that I was able to play ice hockey here on the Ritten. I won titles, met great people, experienced historic moments that will forever remain in my memories and played in a professionally structured club that has great potential for the future. I've always enjoyed going to practices - even in the summer when they were working hard on fitness. Reaching common goals with my teammates has always been a priority of mine. And the satisfaction when we succeeded was one of the best feelings you can have."
... On his future goals and plans: "It may sound silly, but the thing that makes me happiest is not having any more obligations to ice hockey. Since I was five years old, it's been normal for me to go to hockey several times a week after school or work. It scares me a little to think about what it will be like from now on without all that. I'll be available to the club, but not right away - I want to unplug for a while first. However, I can imagine having a role in the Rittner Buam later on. Not as a coach, but as an official or on the board."
... On his best teammate: "Ryan Malone. When he came to us, he was already a rising star in the NHL. Years later he became a great player in the NHL. He had everything you need: physical presence on the ice, a powerful shot - he was an all-star."
... On his best opponent: "When I was a young player for the Rittner Buam, several NHL hockey players were playing in the big league. One of them was Matt Cullen, who played for Cortina. He was a powerful player, the best in the league. He went on to play over 1,000 games in the NHL. I still remember how we tried in every way, even incorrectly, to stop him. But he never answered to provocations, he didn't react in a quarrelsome way, he was indifferent to all this. He did his thing and was always the best."
... On his toughest opponent: "Not necessarily because of the toughness, but against Armin Helfer and Christian Borgatello it was extremely difficult to set up offensive plays. Against them it wasn't easy to set anything up."
... On his best coach: "It was Rob Wilson. He was instrumental in winning our first Scudetto in 2014. We all learned a lot from him because he went into a lot of detail."
... on his most beautiful title: "Of course it was the first Scudetto, in 2014. For all of us the relief was huge, the whole Renon was in a state of excitement. When we won game 6 against HC Pustertal, I was overjoyed. It was definitely the best moment of my career."
... on the most painful defeat: "It happened in 2015, when in Game 7 of the Scudetto Final against Asiago we lost 2-4 because of a stupid time penalty that wasn't there."
... On the most difficult moment of his sports career: "It was this year. It was extremely difficult knowing that I was getting worse physically and that I couldn't help the team on the ice anymore, but having to stay focused mentally to motivate my teammates and also myself."
Alexander Eisath Profile:
Born on: June 12, 1986 in Bolzano
Profession: Marketing Product Manager at Loacker
Games/points in the United States
Northern Mass Cyclones (81 games/106 points)
Salem State College (63 games/13 points)
Matches/points with the Rittner Buam:
A Series (317 games/51 points)
Alps Hockey League (258 games/45 points)
Continental Cup (20 games/1 point)
B Series (11 games/3 points)
Italian Cup (9 games/1 point)
Supercup (4 games/0 points)
Total (619 games/101 points)
Titles with Rittner Buam:
Italy Cup 2013/14
Italian Cup 2014/15
AlpsHL Championship 2016/17
Italian Supercup 2017/18
Italian Supercup 2018/19
Italian Supercup 2019/20
Photo: Max Pattis