On whether the 7-1 “shellacking” last week will impact Colorado’s preparation:
Well, I’m sure they’ll be reminded of it, and if anything, it’ll be a little bit of a motivator for them, but if you look around the league right now, we had that same shellacking from St. Louis not long before that. St. Louis goes into Arizona and gets beat. I think with the schedule, the way it is, you’re going to get games where you’re caught a little off-guard, things don’t go quite your way. They’ll try and learn from it, just like we’ll try and learn from it. But, I think at this time of the year, that was one game. They know that they’re going to have to play better than they did in that game, and we know that game could’ve gone either way, even early on. They got off to a good start there. We were teetering right there, with, which the way the game was going, we went one way with it, so we’re going to have to learn from that as well. But they’re a good team, they know what’s at stake here, and I fully expect them to be prepared and we’ll get their best game.
On what he liked from the Anaheim game:
I didn’t think we played nearly as well as we needed to, to be honest with you. I thought our defense played hard below the goal line, I thought our wall play, especially in our own zone, left a lot to be desired. Cost us too much time in our zone, not enough time in theirs. But, I thought the team played hard, I thought they were fully invested in that game, I thought both teams played hard. I just thought we didn’t execute on the wall and pay a big enough price in those areas. Those are little things this time of the year that make a big difference in where you play, and I give Kyle Clifford credit. I thought Cliffy was our best left winger the other night. No disrespect to Cliffy, but he needs some help there on that left side.
On how the penalty kill has consistently been a strength of the team:
Well, I think the big key for us is goals-against, keeping it down. It’s funny how that works with our penalty kill. When our penalty kill slipped, our goals-against climbed. I know it’s obvious it’s directly related, but it’s a reflection of our commitment without the puck. That game the other night, I didn’t leave that game in my mind thinking, ‘Jeez, they could’ve called a lot more penalties.’ I thought they didn’t call the ticky-tacky stuff, and the penalty that was called was a puck over the glass. But I didn’t leave the game thinking, ‘Jeez, why didn’t they call this, or why didn’t they call that?’ I just thought it was a hard game played between the whistles. I liked the fact the referees weren’t looking to call stuff just because it was a hard game. You have guys getting get knocked off their feet, and there were some good board battles that they let go. There were some good battles in the blue paint that they let go, and to me, I think that’s the way it should be this time of the year. But your special teams are going to have to make a difference, and your PK is going to have to be ready to get the job done, which it did the other night, which allowed us to get a point, so it’s important. [Reporter: It seemed like they established that tone early on, the referees, and then they were consistent with it all the way through, which I think is important as a player that everybody understood the way they were going to call the game.] I think the players understood that discipline was going to be important, and the referees, I think they respected the fact that guys were disciplined. I don’t like games where there are all these ticky-tack calls there. I don’t think referees need to look for stuff, I think they need to call what’s there. I thought they did a good job with that the other night.
On Paul LaDue and younger players’ performance in the Anaheim game:
I thought those young guys coming in did a good job in that environment. I thought Paul was a solid performer for us, I thought Michael came in and played a hard game for us. He had a lot of courage in that game to be the player that we think he can be. So, I thought those two young guys came in and took advantage of an opportunity, which you want to see. [Reporter: Forbort seemed to be pretty engaged in that game, as well.] I thought Derek and Drew were outstanding in that game. Again, it’s tough on your D when you spend too much time in your zone, and I thought those guys were especially good for us. [Reporter: You look at the game, no power play time, and Drew plays almost 30 minutes.] Yeah, he’s a difference maker. He’s a great competitor, that kid.
On Alex Iafallo’s progression:
I’m not sure yet. We’ll get a better idea today, either progressing him along and see where he’s at at the end of the day. I haven’t heard yet today, because he was still going through workout and that kind of stuff to see where he is, but I’m not sure. I don’t have an answer.
On Jake Muzzin’s “step forward” to get on the ice at the end of practice:
Yeah, step forward. I still think he’s going to need some time, but we’ll see. Again, I haven’t heard. You want to get him back on the ice. He’s been able to work out. Make sure his legs stay ready, and then when he’s ready, we’ll get him going again. But, the first thing is to get him on the ice, the next thing is to get him back with the team, and we’ll go from there.
-Quotes on Daniel Brickley, Sheldon Rempal were saved for a later post
-Lead photo via Adam Pantozzi/NHLI