February 11, 2013 11:34 am

February 11 morning skate quotes: Darryl Sutter

On Anze Kopitar’s performance against Detroit:
“He was good in the heavy areas, better on loose pucks. Just really competitive in the areas that he has to be in instead of waiting for the puck to come to him or playing away from the puck. He was getting to where – and he’ll tell you, too – to where he’s in there, turning over pucks, and being just a little more forceful with his game.

On whether Jonathan Quick’s surgery affects his use on back-to-back game days:
“[His] injury is a non-issue. That’s a long time ago. That’s a non-issue. That’s like a player that got hurt last year affecting him this year. That’s not a factor in the decision with Quicker at all. I think the factor that we have now is performance. It’s simple. I think that we’re giving up three goals a game, and…you’ll win one in three, which is kind of what we’re doing. So you give up three goals a game, you’re going to win one in three. So we need better goaltending – it doesn’t matter who our goalie is, to tell you the truth.”

On whether the performance against Detroit resembled the performances from the playoffs:
“Well, we’re a different team than we were in the playoffs., so I don’t look at it like that at all. We’ve had to make a lot of adjustments in terms of minutes played and kids playing…Quite honest, we’ve got a really young hockey team, and it’s younger now than it was in the playoffs. That’s a challenge every day. I’m not comparing the playoff game or the last season. I’m looking at it as game-to-game how we play.”

On what pleased him in the Detroit game:
“We spent a lot of time in the offensive zone, and that’s what you’re trying to do when you break it all down as coaching staffs – it’s how much time you can play in the offensive zone, which means that you’ve done a good job of keeping it out of your zone, or defending, and then not turning the puck over in the neutral zone. So if we can continue to work at those things, then we have a chance to win.”

On Keaton Ellerby’s performance:
“I thought he was fine. I talked to him this morning about those three or four more minutes than he’s used to playing. So I think there was a little drop off, as the game went along. I think that the biggest adjustment…is this a different league than the one he was in. Eastern Conference plays a different type of game, for the most part, than the western conference. It’s a big adjustment. If you sat down with him and asked how many times, or if heknew everybody on St. Louis, I bet that you’d get about a 60/40 response. That’s the biggest adjustment. You’ve got to remember…what is he, the second, third youngest defenseman on a really young defense? You’re just wanting him to fit in, not stand out.”

On the importance of teaching Ellerby about St. Louis’ style of play:
“Pretty important, or he’ll be flat on his ass.”

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