Here are some of the postgame quotes after the Devils 6-3 win over the Blue Jackets Tuesday night:
Thoughts on the win…
“It was a good win, it was needed. We did a good job early, taking them out of the game; not giving them too much. We were able to get some goals on the power play early and that helped.”
The team got three PP goals tonight; will that shut up some questions for a few days?
“We hope so, but probably not (smiles), you never know. It helps definitely, to get a good day out of the PP. Now the thing will be for us to keep it going.”
Describing his goal…
“It was a great play by Patty (Elias); he shot and Jamie (Langenbrunner) was in front screening and did a good job, the puck came right to me. I just had to make sure I hit the net.”
Is it fun playing with Kovalchuk, especially on the PP?
“Definitely; it makes everything difficult for the defenders to line up on him. It also gives the rest of us more time and space, which is good.”
Are you glad you don’t have to play against him anymore?
“Yeah, I always used to be on his side too; he’s got a shot that’s not too much fun to get in front of. It’s good to have him on our side instead.”
Was it nice to have six-goal support tonight?
“Yeah, you just take it the way it goes; every game presents different challenges. Today we played well.”
You won your 40th game of the season tonight, despite giving up three goals…
“I don’t care (how many I give up). It’s been nice at home lately; we had a little hiccup against St. Louis, but we’ve been scoring a lot of goals and we have to feel happy about that.”
Is it nice to get back to the 40-win plateau after missing it last year (because of injury)?
“Last year if I would’ve played more I would’ve got it hopefully, but it’s always nice to hit it and get it over with. A lot of people are talking about it because it’s my own record that I’m breaking (adding to), it’s not somebody else’s (laughs). It’s still an accomplishment, trying to raise the bar for the next one coming, that’s for sure.”
You’re getting closer to 600 wins…
“What is it two more? Three more? Well, I thought about; there’s lots of games left to be able to do it, hopefully and eventually it will happen.”
What did you see on the first goal, Antoine Vermette’s one-timer from the blueline?
“It was a one-timer that was really hard. He skated from his own zone with his stick cocked in the air for a long time and just overpowered me on that one.”
Nice to see your team put in three PP goals tonight?
“Yeah, they weren’t all pretty but I think we got ourselves in a situation to be able to be successful; and that’s the bottom line. When you play well you draw penalties, you get your chances on the PP and that’s what we did. It’s a good sign because you need the PP to do well, but you need to get them also. We did enough today to be able to do something with it.”
Do you feel like you played better (tonight) because of less anxiety in your personal life?
“You can find any excuses when things don’t go your way. It’s normal, you’re not a robot; like I said a lot of times, if you work hard you can turn it around and you never have to give up. The guys in the room support me, nobody is pointing fingers or anything; we lost two games (in a row) and it was a tough stretch for us. Tonight was a game we can build off of.”
Did you get the puck for your new son?
“No, I don’t think he’ll be upset yet (smiles).”
Talking about his goal…
“I think (Mike) Mottau made a great play at the blueline, very patient; he made a great pass to Zach. We were kind of two-on-one, he gave me the puck and I decided to shoot; so it went in.”
Was it nice to see the PP come alive tonight?
“It was great, especially to get one on that first PP; I think we ended up getting three but even the ones we didn’t score on we had great movement and I think the big difference we weren’t standing still — everyone was making good plays. We were a little bit more relaxed on it.”
You made your second goal look really, really easy…
“(chuckles) It was a good play by Jamie and I was just trying to get the goalie to lean the other way; I tried to get him to think I was going to go to my backhand. I ended up getting it over his shoulder — a lot of things kind of went right on that one.”
Is that just an instinct play or have you tried something like that before?
“I guess it’s just more reaction than anything, we don’t really practice those types of things.”
Do you think your first goal let the team relax a bit on the PP?
“Maybe; anytime you can get one right away on the PP it’s a good sign. When you get that second PP, you’re excited about it; as opposed to not getting anything generated and being a little more nervous, a little more tentative on the PP. When you get one early, it’s a good feeling.”
How do you explain the six goals after not scoring on Saturday?
“We got some breaks. I mentioned last game that we have to work harder and get more support on the ice. I think they did that tonight. We had guys going to the net. You look at Travis (Zajac) as an example, he had two goals but didn’t get a shot at the net; he scored two goals. That means you are going to the net, the puck hits you, and goes in. We had a lot of guys play like this and it paid off.”
You separated Travis and Zach and they each had two goals tonight…
“If you look at Patrik as an example, I switched the two centers. Patrik played hard; I think his best game since he’s been back (from his concussion). He moved the puck well, skated, went at the net, played in traffic. He did a lot of good things.”
How good was Kovalchuk?
“Kovy was good, I’m happy, probably one of his best games. He’s a guy that has to score to feel better and I think it’s just the beginning with him.”
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