April 21, 2013 11:35 am

April 21 morning skate quotes: Darryl Sutter

On whether he paid much attention to the Detroit-Vancouver game last night:
“I watch all the games. I didn’t have much else to do after I left the rink yesterday.”

On whether attention shifts to securing home ice advantage with Los Angeles clinching:
“It turns to getting everybody to play well. Home ice advantage is irrelevant. It’s based on tonight, how you play tonight, and quite honest we’re playing a team we haven’t played very well against.”

On whether he can pinpoint reasons towards Los Angeles’ struggles against Dallas this year:
“Yeah, I said it after the last game. Our top players this year have not played very well against them.”

On Los Angeles’ recent struggles with Dallas despite playing well for the last two months:
“Ours? The reason that we made the playoffs is because we played 25 games. It’s not ‘the last two months’. We won 25 games. There’s always a team that guys struggle against, and hopefully they can get it off the schneid tonight.”

On whether it helps that the team has been playing well at home:
“I mean, they’ve beat us twice in our building. We’ve only lost four in regulation here – two against Dallas.”

On whether the team has been frustrated by its struggles against Dallas this season:
“You know what? I’m sure you asked them that, and we’ll find out, right? We’ve lost games against them. Every game was tied going into the third period…when it’s tied going into the third, that’s when both teams usually have their top players playing a few more minutes, or a few more shifts. That’s been the difference. Don’t say ‘team’. You want me to identify players, you go talk to them. It’s very clear. Our top two lines, as you said right at the outset, our top two lines have to get into playoff mode, otherwise it’s just the playoffs. If they get into playoff mode, it gives us a better opportunity to win tonight and to play better once playoffs start.”

On the importance of getting “Kopitar going again”:
“Kopi? He’s been our best player every game all year at forward. I mean, what do you mean ‘get him going again?’ [Reporter: Well, he’s had chances, but he hasn’t scored a goal in a while.] Well, then hopefully with his skill set he does. If you look at it, he goes in and out of the top-25 in scoring in the league. He’s like fifth or sixth in assists. I’m not too worried about ‘get him going’. I think he is going. When you say ‘top two lines’, that’s a combination of six players, right?”

On whether he does much “scoreboard watching”:
“I think when I’m at home – I don’t say ‘scoreboard watching’ – I like watching games. I’m trying to see…who you’re going to play in terms of three or four teams. So basically you’re scouting. You’re not ‘scoreboard watching’. You’re trying to find some tendencies or combinations or find out what guys are banged up, or young guys, things like that more than ‘scoreboard watching’.”

On anything particular that he didn’t like from the top two lines in third periods versus Dallas:
“I just think if you break it down statistically, Benn has been a dominant, physical player against us. He’s only got three points or something [against us], but he’s been a dominant, physical player in the middle of the ice, and that’s something that we’re usually really good at, is controlling that type of a player. So we have to do a better job against him. Even the game we won, it was as I said, all the games were tied going into the third, and we scored two to make it three-one, and then Whitney scores a power play goal to make it three-two, so Whitney has played three or four games and has four goals. He’s a pretty significant player for them.”

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