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March 16, 2013 12:33 pm

March 16 morning skate quotes: Darryl Sutter

On the message to any young player making his debut:
“Try not to sit on the bench.”

On whether young players have a tendency to do too much in their debuts:
“No, I don’t think so. We’ve all played our first game at some time, right? Go out, friggin’ work hard, try and friggin’ tramp on someone early. Try and shoot the puck. Try and skate. Try and pass it onto the stick.”

On whether Tyler Toffoli needs to be in a top-six role at this level:
“No. I mean, there’s not too many guys who step in and play in the top six, I don’t think. We’re trying to get some other guys going. I’m not worried about Tyler Toffoli…Guys don’t stay together very often. Other than Kopitar’s line, there’s nobody staying together. Clearly not. And when you say that, what’s a ‘top-six’? So does Florida have a top-six? They’re the worst team in the league. So if I get called up there, do I get to play on the top six?…On the good teams, what’s the difference? Even strength minutes on four lines are just about the very same. It’s just special teams, right?”

On whether Toffoli will see time on the power play:
“I don’t know. What we like best about him is he shoots the puck lots and he’s a good penalty killer. Historically he’s led wherever he’s played in shorthanded goals. He’s doing it again.”

On whether the ability to dictate line matchups gives a big home-ice advantage:
“It depends on teams. It’s not so much line matchups. It’s more and more defensemen, and then faceoff guys. It wasn’t a problem for us against San Jose. But we need our centermen – it’s the one area in experience that we can match up with, right? It’s the only area that we match up with them is down the middle, when you do Thornton, Marleau, Handzus and Gomez, right? It’s the one area that we can [match up] in terms of experience. So a big part of that is just that guy, like if it’s Thornton-Kopi, Stoll-Gomez, Richards/Carter-Marleau, Handzus-Fraser. So that’s more important. Hey, and Thornton’s good on faceoffs, right? Other night, Kopitar was very good and nobody else was. We chased the game a little.”

On the penalty kill:
“It was really good until the last game. Bad goal – goalie’s got to be a good penalty killer, and a failure to clear by a young defenseman. You guys have asked that a thousand times…not a thousand times, but every time they score a couple goals, you ask the same question. Putting guys in penalty killing situations they’re not used to, the goalie has to be a hell of a lot better penalty killer for you, and you’ve got to shoot pucks down the ice. The two goals they’ve scored – bad goal, Voynov. Shoot the puck down the ice, 200 feet. Shoot it at their defensemen – you just made a pass. You just got the second assist. They used to give three assists because defensemen would just rim it around, right? The defense would just rim it around the boards to their defense. They’d go around, D, D, shot. I got the third assist. That’s why they went back to two assists. [They] didn’t want to give it to the other team’s defenseman. The first option is not a rim. When I came here, that was the first option – rim the puck. We’re trying not to get them to rim pucks. It’s a bad option in today’s game.

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