Here are some of the postgame quotes after the Devils 3-1 win over the Penguins on Friday night:
Talking about the first goal of the game…
“We had a good forecheck going and Kovy got the puck, he tried to feed me in the slot and it went all the way to our D. We talked about before the game if there’s no shot straight on net, try to bang it off the boards and it just worked out there. We had a little bit of luck on our side.”
Any explanation why you guys are 5-0 against Pittsburgh this season?
“Just that we are ready to play (them); they’re a good hockey club. They get chances, I thought Marty played great tonight, it’s just the way we play against them — you cant just sit back otherwise they’re going to burn you because they have so much talent over there.”
So they bring out the best in you guys?
“Yeah and we don’t just hesitate or wait for what they’re going to do, if we do that there’s not too many nights we’re going to beat them. We have to be ready to go (when we play them); we have to bring the game to them.”
How do you continue this good play tomorrow night against the Islanders?
“We had two good games in a row, we know what it took and we just have to play the same way.”
Was it hard to stay focused after so many missed opportunities in the second period (5-minute PP, penalty shot)?
“It is hard and you have to respect the guys, what they did, they stayed with it. A lot of things happen in a hockey game, sometimes you react emotionally and differently; today even though it didn’t go well for us on the power play and the penalty shot, we had a lot of chances to take over the game and we just let it hang. Usually when you do that against good teams – you pay the price. But our guys were confident and we knew they played last night, and we needed to play a solid third period; and we got two goals.”
You only gave up one goal tonight; did Sidney Crosby trick you on that shot?
“He wasn’t really looking at me, I know he likes that quick shot — it’s hard to kind of read him when he’s not looking at you at all. He hit it perfectly, I wanted to stand my ground there and he put it right over my stick; it doesn’t look that good, but it’s a pretty good shot.”
Your team has played well against Pittsburgh in all five games this year, why is that?
“I think we have a lot of respect for them, we know if we don’t play well we’re going to have a big problem. I think they bring the best out of us and you’re playing scared a bit with that respect that you have for them. We really took it to them, we had a great second period where we gained a lot of momentum — I think we tired them pretty good in the second even though we didn’t do anything great with some of the stuff we missed.”
Evgeni Malkin had a breakaway early in the third period; did he hit the outside of the net there?
“Yeah, he fanned on it. He got me going further and I think the puck just rolled off his stick and hit the side of the net.”
What has stood out to you about Jamie Langenbrunner as a leader after 11 games here?
“That’s the reason why he’s captain, he’s a very experienced guy, and he’s won two Cups and knows what it takes to win. Not just him, he’s a great leader, but the leadership group here is unbelievable — Marty, Jamie, Zach (Parise), (Rob) Niedermayer, you can go on and on with names; the most important thing is those guys know how to win and it’s very exciting to play with them.”
What did you see on the penalty shot? Obviously you didn’t get the result you wanted, but did you get the shot you wanted?
“Yeah I got a penalty shot before, a couple of years ago when I was a young pup. So I scored on that move and I tried to go low glove, but he outplayed me. It’s still frustrating but the good thing is that we found a way to win.”
Did you feel better after you scored in the third period?
“You know you just try to work hard, don’t stop, don’t give up; you’re going to finally get some breaks, so this one felt good.”
On the first goal your shot went wide, was that planned?
“Yeah, they were blocking the lane pretty well and obviously being the home team we know how the boards are; I actually got a better hop off the boards then I expected, it came straight out and Patty did the rest there.”
You also scored the game-winner, talk me through that one…
“It was almost the exact same opportunity I had in the first period where I hit the crossbar, the elbow basically; I was just trying to put it in the same spot — I knew I had a good lane there. I just put everything I could into the shot and luckily it went in.”
Pittsburgh only had one goal tonight and you’re 5-0 against them this year, what has been the secret to success?
“I think we match-up well against them and we obviously know they’re a great team and we always come ready to play against them. I think we really try to focus on our defensive play because we know how good they are offensively, so that’s one of the things we really did well tonight.”
There are big games and bigger games, how big was this to you?
“Well, especially in the standings and the team we played; it’s good, it’s a confidence builder. We have been working on having a little more intensity and the last two games it showed that our intensity level is higher than it has been the last few weeks.”
How about Andy Greene’s game?
“Very good, he played a lot…again. Well, we had guys that were in the penalty box so we had to maybe overplay him a little bit. His game is as it’s been all year — very solid and moves the puck well in the D-zone; and he scored a goal (smiles).”
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