ORI got to catch up today after practice with goalie Anders Lindback, who’s now four games deep with the Reign and holds a 2-1-1-0 record (.870 save percentage, 3.40 GAA). The Swedish netminder was added to the Reign via PTO in late October after injuries to Jonathan Quick and Jeff Zatkoff left the Reign’s goalie depth chart depleted. Once his visa paperwork was finalized Lindback got to work in a hurry and the transition hasn’t been an easy one. But the 28-year-old had his best game yet in Sunday’s 3-1 win over Rockford in which he stopped 31 of 32 shots and is riding back-to-back wins.
On the process of getting back into game action:
It’s been good. Obviously it’s been a long time since I’ve played hockey. It’s been early February. It was a tough couple first games there to find the rhythm. I’ve been feeling good in practices and stuff all the time but the last game I really felt like I was back where I should be, how I should be playing. Obviously I’m disappointed, but I’m not surprised. It takes a little time to get back, from here we’ll see what’s going to happen.
On what the biggest challenges are when getting back into game action after a long layoff:
I feel like it’s so much timing, too. It’s hard to replicate a game in practice. The situations with all the traffic, you don’t really get that. It’s so much straight on, straight shots. Not the same mental aspect of the game, right? You don’t know when it’s going to happen or what. That’s how I felt all my career, when you get a couple games in a row that’s when you really start to feel that rhythm. It makes things a lot easier.
On if he felt Sunday’s win over Rockford was his best game:
It was. I felt my positioning and tracking the puck, but most of all I felt the timing was there. I felt more comfortable in net. It’s just a feeling, you really can’t just tell, it’s how you feel out there and I felt like I was back where I usually am when I’m playing good.
On his experiences so far this season:
This season for sure’s been a little up and down. I went to Jersey for camp, then I went back to Sweden, pretty much worked out by myself for a couple weeks. So it’s not been optimal but on the other hand I got to look at it as opportunities. … After all, we’ve played four games and got points in three of them and won two, so I can’t be too unhappy with that. Hopefully just keep going.
On the game of fellow countryman Adrian Kempe:
He’s a great skater. He’s going to be a good player, for sure. You can tell he’s got a good hockey sense, like you said he’s really fast. He’s got a good career in front of him.