Sunday practice quotes: Darryl Sutter
On how practice has evolved following Saturday’s cuts:
We just go from two groups to one. Continue to work on the same things we’ve been working on – just a little tighter now.
On an up-tempo practice the morning after a day off:
With the new CBA, it’s a scheduled day, right? So this was the best day, when you talked to the guys, that we could do it in knowing that we were going to assign some guys yesterday. Don’t say ‘cut.’ I don’t like that word ‘cut.’ They’re our players, and we were really pleased with them, quite honest. It was really good for me, because I haven’t had training camp with a lot of those second – obviously the first-year guys, but second, third-year guys, I haven’t had training camp, so I haven’t gotten to know them personally. You watch them, but it’s better to get to know them, so we were really pleased with them.
On younger players that stood out during training camp:
Of the boys that went back? [Reporter: Yeah.] Sabourin is a first year guy, so I didn’t know him at all. I just watched a little bit of video on him, so that was good to see, to get to know him and see that he’s got to make some progress. Andreoff – we always wanted him to work on his skating. He did a good job. You can see that he’s trained to be a better skater. Skating coach or consultant – he’s taken some of that, and he uses that now, so that’s important. I think seeing the Miller boy for the first time – righthanded shot, defenseman, skilled guy. Forbort – same thing. See their, like what you call ‘evolution of practice’, just the evolution of those players. [Reporter: Probably moving forward, I know you watch them through the course of the year – you’ll get to see them – but again, when it comes to next year’s camp, you kind of gauge where they’re going] And that’s what you tell them when they’re going out, too. Those kids that are still on entry level contracts, that’s part of the thing. You know what? They’re disappointed to go, but they’re not disappointed in what you tell them, and that’s the best part. Hey, we’ve been in that position, right? And that’s what you try and keep in your mind, too – it’s disappointing always to go, but as long as you know that you’re still part of it.
On Willie Mitchell’s performance in Friday’s game:
Yeah, it was for me just straight evaluation. I was almost not coaching. I was almost evaluating Willie, right? That was the big thing for me. I sat with him on the plane there for a bit, and then this morning we just talked about things that happened during the game. He hadn’t played a game in, what’d I say, 15 months? He felt pretty good about it, I think. During the third period we tried to really play him, and even in those time outs, he was moving around because he was sucking [wind] a little bit. [Reporter: What was your evaluation? How did he do?] He was fine. I mean, that was why he was still playing in the third. He…probably played 20..[Reporter: 23] minutes. You know what? That’s what Willie plays. He did good.