December 7 practice quotes: Darryl Sutter - LA Kings Insider

On Trevor Lewis’ increased scoring rate:
I think everybody likes to see Lewie score because of all the stuff he does [that] nobody notices, so I think teammates and coaches, everybody likes when Lewie scores. He did it once earlier in the year, and I told him he was going to win the Rocket Richard. He went back-to-back, and then he had a little drop there. So he’s on it again. [Reporter: So if he scores another goal, a third game in a row?] If you look at it, it was like our third or fourth game or whatever it was, I don’t know, fifth, whenever he scored his first goal and then he did it back-to-back, he was still on pace to score like 75. … Good player for us. It’s been like that since I’ve been here.

On how eight straight games against the Eastern Conference affects his planning, and being in favor of playing every team at home and on the road:
Oh yes, I like going to every [building]. I’m sure the players do, too. I know our travel gets tough, but that’s part of being a coast team. I think everybody likes going and playing everybody. From a coaching standpoint, you watch so many games from the east, and they’re over by 6:30 or 7:30. We get all those games first before we seeing ours usually – our division or our conference. You try and get to know the younger players or older players that’ve switched conferences, see how they adjust or things like that, and then the same thing with your players, too. See how guys adjust to playing against different teams or different styles. [Reporter: Is it hard for the players to get to know who some of those players are? Like Carolina doesn’t have a big superstar like Crosby or somebody like that.] I think every team has these young guys to talk about, so I’m sure they do the same thing when they see Forbort, Dowd, Gravel. I’m sure they do the same thing, so we have four or five guys every night where you go ‘who are these guys, this is where they play.’ You say somebody played against them somewhere – you guys talk about ‘em, things like that. It’s pretty much the same, every team now. There are probably four or five guys that guys haven’t played against much, or if you even look at it, players total – I’m sure if you do our lineup tomorrow versus Carolina, how many games they’ve actually played [versus the Hurricanes], it’s pretty shocking sometimes. We played, who was it, they had nine or 10 guys that hadn’t played a game at Staples. [Reporters: Chicago.] Chicago. So when you say that about Carolina, well, those guys are all good players. That’s why they’re playing. You’ve got to do your homework and make sure the guys have as much as they can on ‘em – stat-wise, size-wise, talent-wise, those types of things.

On structuring practice during a 7-in-22 stretch, and input from team leadership on scheduling off-days:
Well, we do it once we get our schedule in the summer, and then once guys get to camp. Obviously I couldn’t do it in camp this year because some of the guys weren’t here. We make adjustments, too. We had to make adjustments – what days we’re doing what or who’s doing what – quite honest, because of injuries this year. This stretch here, you’re getting them as much time as you can and putting the onus on them to handle it properly because in three weeks we’re going to be saying the opposite. We’re going to be saying, ‘we should’ve not been so hard on ‘em these three weeks.’ It’s just the way the schedule is, and guys have got to handle it. We give ‘em as much as we can in terms of making sure the energy and all that’s there for the game. But the preparation, focus ultimately is on the player. It’s a normal schedule right now, from our old schedule. You did three a week, and then you went on a trip. That’s the way it is. That’s what you did. And then you’d get a couple long trips, and that was it.

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