April 6 morning skate quotes: Darryl Sutter - LA Kings Insider

On how well the team has been performing defensively:
We’re known for that, and I think that we have to continue to do that, and we’ve done it pretty well all year. I mean, you always have your little bumps in the road somewhere. I know the last time we played the Canucks they had 40-something shots. We didn’t like that. [Reporter: What happened in your mind, specifically, that allowed them to get to 42?] You know, the first period, both teams had a lot. Whatever.

On whether the Kings are comfortable in big games, given their history:
I don’t know what that really means. I know we get asked that lots about big games, but I’d like to think that’s why they put 82 on the schedule, is that they’re all big games, and the way the divisions line up now with an odd number of games – two and three – that puts more emphasis on your home record, and then the way long trips are set up now, I mean there’s so much involved in it that I don’t really put a whole lot of emphasis on one being bigger. You don’t get any more points. [Reporter: But just in terms of games, playoff games, championships and things – poise and patience and confidence – does it help your guys handle the moment in games like this one, you think?] I think anybody – and I’m sure it’s the same with the Canucks – anybody’s that’s won championships or gone a long ways in playoffs, they always draw on that experience, and players that have never played playoff games can not. That’s a fact. I think that experience matters in terms of age only if they’ve had experience in playoffs, that’s it. Anybody that’s an older player that has not is probably what drags it down more than pulls it up. So I think that experience is what you always feed on, but at the same time, the league has changed a lot in the last five or six years in terms of the way the cap has moved and the way rosters are, things like that. It’s really close, and if you look at it, just even coming into our last game, we talked about it, 12 of the teams were still playoff teams on our side, and that’s significant in today’s game, and that’s what everybody wanted, and that’s where it’s at. I’ve said it lots. Now we’re down to nine or 10 good teams that are still alive, so that’s the way it’s supposed to be.

On whether he appreciates the atmosphere in big games as much as the players:
I’ve had it every way. It’s not like I’m a first contract or first time around guy. I mean, I’ve been around a lot, and I’ve had it lots of ways. Make it in your last few games, make it early, but I think the big change is obviously the way the divisions are and the way the wildcards are. It’s a totally different way of looking at standings now when you do it. This year it’s coming down to the two-three spots in a division, and it’s coming down to probably the eighth spot in the wild-card.

On whether limiting the Avalanche to 10 shots was an example of Los Angeles being that good, or Colorado being tired:
I think it’s both, but actually I do a lot of that myself, too, and the shots actually were 38 to 23. I’ve said that lots this year. I just said a little while ago, as soon as we get a game where we give up 30-to-40 shots, I get a mic stuck in my face wondering ‘what’s wrong with our team?’ But usually what’s wrong is just that a guy broke his pencil off. [Reporter: Patrick noted that Landeskog, he had a shot on goal that wasn’t counted.] I’ve said that lots this year. Kopi can go two or three games without a shot in our rink, and you look at it, and he has our best scoring chances. I think it’s just very selective. It’s not an actual ratio ever. … Going back to it, everybody’s been 27 and 33 in the league. [Reporter: Are there a lot of rinks that are that glaring?] I don’t know.

On Vancouver “paying the price” if they drive hard to Los Angeles’ net:
Hey, I think next to Winnipeg, they’re the highest penalized team…in our conference, for sure. We know that. We can deal with it.