Here are some of the postgame quotes after Wednesday’s 5-2 Devils loss to the Canucks:
Their second goal did you get a piece of it with your stick?
“Yeah, it was a little miscommunication down low, and I got to the guy late. I was just trying to block it and I ended up tipping it; I don’t know if went right in off of that or what.”
After the last game you said the slow start was due to lack of intensity, was that the same case again today?
“Yeah, tonight might have been even worse. Tonight it was too big of a hole to climb out of, too good of a team to spot three goals and we just couldn’t come back tonight.”
How did you feel in your first game back, obviously not the result you wanted?
“Yeah it was frustrating for sure, but it was nice to be back playing. Definitely not the result we wanted.”
You felt okay physically though?
“Yeah, I felt fine. It’s good to be back playing.”
On the fourth Canucks goal, did you get a piece of that with your stick?
“No, I think that might have nicked my shin pad.”
Was any extra pressure tonight for you and Luongo because everyone in Canada was watching this game?
“Not really, it’s about one game that people see (us) matched up. It is what it is; we can’t really do anything about it. For us, it’s just a disappointing loss; we played a healthy team – they showed the depth they have. It was a different challenge for us, when we meet teams all around the league that are healthy, it gets a little tougher.”
You don’t see the Canucks too often; does that have any bearing on how you guys started off?
“It’s about our game and what we do, I think we looked at some tapes in between periods, you could tell what they were doing; it was what we didn’t do.”
Did the team lose intensity or let up because you got one of your injured players back?
“No. We’re happy to see people coming back, we need that. For only so long you’re going to get away with playing with kids coming up and down from the minor leagues. Today was just an aberration, just because Nieder returned, it has no bearing on the way we play – it should be the same regardless of the players we have.”
You don’t get to see the Sedins too often, how impressed were you with them tonight?
“Well I’ve played against them a lot through the years even though they don’t play in our conference. They’re skilled players; that’s why they were paid so much this past summer. They’re skilled — and really patient with the puck — they’re twins, they know where each other is at, at all times (laughing).”
After they got back into the game, did it then turn into a good road game for you guys?
“Yeah, it was a tight second period and there were chances both ways. In the third period we kind of just sat back and tried to protect the lead, but we played our game and we scored some big goals.”
All of the talk leading up to this game, you said it was just another game and you needed a win…
“Yeah of course, its the first game of a (four-game) road trip, an important road trip for our team. We wanted to come here and establish something good going forward.”
Have you ever had a police escort to a game?
“Yes I have, not with the Canucks, but with Team Canada, World Cup, World Championships.”
Are you going to start tomorrow in Philly?
“I’m not sure yet.”
How were you feeling after Travis Zajac’s goal made it 3-2 going into intermission?
“Well not great obviously, we used the 15 minute intermission to regroup. It was a bit of a bad break that went off of our d-man’s skate — I was going to make the save there and it redirected. It was a bad break, but sometimes that happens in a game and its just a matter of staying with the process and making sure you don’t want to give up any freebies to the other team.”
You approached this whole day with a very lose attitude, is that something that you set out to do?
“Yeah, of course; it’s (just) a game and I want to have fun playing it. When things are going well, it’s a bit easier to enjoy it and have a good time out there. We’re doing something that we love so there’s no reason to be angry or mad or tense.”
After your team scored three goals did you let two in because you felt bad for Brodeur?
“Yeah after we scored three I had to let two in because I felt bad for him (smiles).”
After it was 3-2 what went wrong?
“I think it’s what went wrong before that. I think the way we started — again — it’s not a good start for us; we were lucky to get two goals back and make it a game at that moment. The second period I felt that our guys would play better; we did play better, but not good enough. It’s just one night that nothing was working, our guys were, they didn’t have the legs that they’ve had in other games. You look at our top players; they’ve been responsible for pretty much every win that we’ve got since the start of the season. But today our top players were not as good.”
Did you see this coming?
“Well, to see it coming, it’s always easier after. Every little doubt that you have — then okay, it’s that, because you know the result.”
Law of averages, were you due for a bad one?
“Let’s try to say yes – we were due for a bad one. It starts from the defenseman all the way up; our best players tonight were the kids — Matt Halischuk, Vladimir Zharkov. Dean McAmmond played well; Nieder for his first game (after missing 11) played well, I liked what he did. Niclas Bergfors, he was fine.”
What went wrong on the two-man advantage?
“Well again, the top players, they have to find the guy that is open for the shot. I was asking if Zach was open, if Jamie (Langenbrunner) was open and they were saying ‘yeah I was open at different times.’ But you have to make the pass at that moment, which we didn’t do.”
Were either of the goalies much of a factor in this game at all?
“I don’t think so; I think it’s more the way we played. If you look at the start, it looks like they were easy goals at the start from both sides. And then they started to get more quality shots than we did. It wasn’t one mistake that we made, it was from the first minute to pretty much the last minute. It was mistakes on the forecheck, no support; mistakes on turnovers, mistakes on passing, mistakes on seeing guys open, making the right pass, breakouts, you name it. Decisions in our end, you look at our second goal against — my Lord — seeing (our) guys going around in circles in our end.”
How about the opposition and their forecheck?
“The opposition, to me, they just walked to a win; very easily walked to a win. I’ve seen them play a lot like this, they’re solid defensively, they wait for their chances; they have a chance to forecheck, they go hard. They are having success the way they are playing, playing with confidence.”
What do you tell your team?
“Well, we’ll start with a practice tomorrow, a good practice; I think they need a good practice. We’ve been going easy (on them) feeling that they might be a little tired and this and that, and you know Christmas coming, everyone, their mind is going somewhere else — so we’ll try to put their mind back on the game.”
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