On the players claiming that their recent play was “more like Kings hockey”:
Well, you have to break the schedule down this year more, that’s for sure. Last year it was forced on you, and we were coming of basically a not really good training summer – a six-week recovery summer – and with the lockout, then the surgeries we had, everything just kind of got backtracked. We never got going. Now you get your schedule early, and I’ve said lots already…there’s no issues in how we play. We know how we want to play, and that’s how we play. Some nights it works, some nights it doesn’t.
On how Matt Greene and Willie Mitchell have looked following their surgeries:
I think both of them have shown signs of improvement lately, but they’ve also shown signs of long layoff. Greener played a little bit in the playoffs for us, but never really got up to speed, and I think Willie, it’s obvious he has peaks and valleys in his game still. But he’s making progress, I think.
On whether much should be read into the evolving lines:
You know what? The last two games we’ve had pretty much five-on-five. We haven’t had many power plays, and we’re a team that doesn’t take penalties, so we’ve tried to use real balance on this trip in terms of ice time, and I don’t like when you’re five-on-five, and if you’re not chasing the lead, I’d prefer to have a little bit more balance in your lines, because quite honest, out west you need that. If you’re just top-heavy, you’ve got guys that play lots and maybe they’ll have good numbers, but your team doesn’t win. I have lots of experience teaching that, so that’s how you do it. We don’t really move guys around at all.
On Matt Frattin:
We’re still getting to know him. The kid works hard. Well trained, came in really good. He’s fit in well with our team. We’d like to see him score now…He plays a fast game, and he gets in the mix game, so it’s not easy to find his way.
On any adjustment Trevor Lewis has had to make at center:
Playoffs last year, it was pretty seamless for him two when we needed him. He played a very prominent center ice role for us in the playoffs last year. He was drafted as a center. Hadn’t played it much. Quite honest, when I came here, Lewie was one of the guys they said couldn’t play on our team. He’s a pretty important player.