January 7 postgame quotes: Minnesota
Darcy Kuemper, on the win:
Tonight was a chance to redeem myself. My game’s at a place where I want it to be right now; I’ve been working at it in Iowa and I’ve been playing good down there and just tried not to change anything when I came up here. It worked out pretty good tonight.
Kuemper on how comfortable he was in net:
After they got those first few shots on net, I just settled down and just got into playing my game.
Kuemper, on his first NHL shootout:
Ah, yeah, this was my first shootout. I was pretty pumped to stop that first one, and obviously just go from there. But yeah, that first shot I was a little nervous for.
Kuemper, on seeing a lot of shots:
Actually, a lot of my games in Iowa have been going like that, we’d been giving up quite a few so it’s something I’m used to seeing, and it obviously helps get you into the game. As a young goalie, it’s a lot better than my other start where I sat around for 15 minutes before I saw my first shot. It gets you into it and then you can just kind of calm down.
Kuemper, on the team’s performance:
Everyone battled hard tonight. We bent a few times and got hemmed in our own zone, but we didn’t break, and we did a real good job of picking up sticks and eliminating second chances, and that made it a lot easier on me.
Nino Niederreiter, on his shootout game-winner:
Cooke was reading the scouting report to me, and he was saying that the blocker side looked pretty far open, so I kind of deked and shot blocker side and it went in.
Niedeerreiter, on Kuemper’s performance:
Oh, he was unbelievable tonight. He’s a great goalie, and he really had a great chance to showcase himself tonight. He made some big key saves to help keep us in the game, it’s really fun having him in the net.
Niederreiter, on Kuemper’s confidence building:
He was out of his mind sometimes, he made some big saves for us tonight, even in the shootout. He’s a great goaltender. I’m very happy to have him here.
Niederreiter, on the win:
It was absolutely huge for us. I mean, it was a greasy win for us, but you take it, and we have to move on from this one.
Mikael Granlund, on the win:
I think we battled hard and sure most of the time they had the puck but we got going and got those two points and those are huge points for us. We need to play better. Sure we missed some guys but that’s not an excuse. We have to keep building and other guys need to step up to get those points.”
Granlund, on being named to Finland’s Olympic team:
This morning was when the roster came up. That was when I knew for sure. It’s good to be on the team. It’s going to be a great tournament. Our team, Finland, we know we don’t have the best roster or we don’t have the best players, but we play together in our structure and we have great goalies and succeed.
Mike Yeo, on the win:
It’s a start, it’s good to get one. I’m really happy for Darcy. He kind of got thrown into a game where he wasn’t quite expecting to play until this morning and he responded extremely well. I thought that a lot of guys really competed and battled and played good games for us tonight, but certainly you have to look at him tonight.
Yeo, on the team’s perseverance:
There was a while there where our execution wasn’t there, we were turning pucks over left and right and really making things very difficult on ourselves. Right from the start Nino stepped up, and that’s a statement for those kids to come out and play like that. It’s a good statement for the rest of the team that our young players can come in and play like that.